Combining the expertise of Reading for Pleasure practitioners will ensure Get Hounslow Reading's long term success. Joint Practice Development identified the need to focus on early language development and reading across Hounslow's primary schools.
Course Facilitator – Charlotte Raby – Author & Education Consultant
Charlotte is a trained primary school teacher, consultant and ITE lecturer specialising in English and an Open University Reading for Pleasure HEI partnership member.
She is also an inaugural member of the English Hubs Council and continues to give advice to the DfE.
Charlotte is a passionate advocate for teaching both the skills of reading and the joy of reading to all children and believes that every child can become a reader.
Currently working as Programme Developer for not-for-profit Systematic Synthetic Phonics programme Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised, Charlotte has developed both the main and SEND programmes for Little Wandle.
We've partnered with Just Imagine Story Centre who curate books to help our teachers grow their knowledge of new and diverse children’s authors/illustrators for their age group.
Here's what director, Nikki Gamble, had to say about GHR
"Just Imagine has been delighted to work closely with HEP for the past three years, selecting and supplying books for the hugely successful Reading for Pleasure initiative. It has been so rewarding to see the passion and commitment that the participating teachers have for children's reading."
Meet the team
After 20 years working as a teacher and university lecturer, Just Imagine's founder and director set up Just Imagine to support schools with their literacy needs, including book selection.
Twenty years later, Just Imagine has a broad portfolio, including the award-winning Reading Gladiators book club and Take One Book.
Nikki heads up school development and training with consultant Jo Castro.
Business Manager, Wil Nicolaou works closely with Nikki and has been with the company for eight years. She's the voice at the end of the phone or email, supporting schools with their enquiries and overseeing the book supply.
She manages the Best Book for Schools website with developer Alex Blanc and content creators Jo Bowers and Roy Moss.
Did you know ...
... the wishlist feature on Best Books for Schools can be used to build collections of books, and the link sent to parents or local businesses to support by purchasing them? It's a great way for schools to increase their book collections.
They are always pleased to hear from schools, so do get in touch, and they will be delighted to assist.
Open University Reading for Pleasure
Steeped in rich pedagogy, this website offers teachers a wealth of resources and case studies to support teachers throughout the Get Hounslow Reading programme.
In addition, all teachers on the programme have signed up to the Teachers Reading Challenge which runs every year.
The Alligator’s Mouth is an independent children’s bookshop in Richmond, stocking books from baby to late teen.
They often work with local schools, providing events or stocking libraries.
There are regular events in the shop, with frequent author and illustrator visits. In the past we have welcomed Jacqueline Wilson, Chris Riddell, Cressida Cowell, Oliver Jeffers and Axel Scheffler.
They were shortlisted for The British Book Awards Children's Bookseller of the Year 2017.
The Alligator's Mouth is a bookshop at the heart of the local community with a mission to reach all readers: the confident, the beginner, and the reading-resistant.
Tony, Margaret and the team are always happy to help, so get in touch or pop in and see them – firstname.lastname@example.org
Mary Curran and Clare Petre from HarperCollins joined the Get Hounslow Reading team at their conference in March 2023. They brought goody bags and cakes with them and have donated books for the GHR prize draw.
Collins Big Cat fosters a love of reading with over 1,500 carefully levelled readers to support guided, independent and whole class reading.
From dynamic fiction to exciting graphic novels to engage reluctant readers, and from poems to fascinating non-fiction, Big Cat has something to inspire and support every child’s reading journey.
The programme also delivers a consistent and highly effective approach to early reading with classroom resources and a diverse range of decodable phonics books developed in partnership with the DfE-validated Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised SSP.
St Mary's University, Twickenham will host the GHR Conference in March 2024.
Their experienced Senior Lecturers in Primary English have a deep-rooted Reading for Pleasure pedagogy.
This is an important partnership with GHR reminding us that RfP practice continues into the classroom of every teacher in every school for every child.
Meet the team
Kerry Assemakis is a Senior Lecturer in Primary English, teaching on both Postgraduate and Undergraduate programmes. Kerry is passionate about teaching and learning in primary English, and especially about reading for pleasure and developing teachers’ identity and confidence as writers. Kerry completed research that focussed on student teachers as creative writers, and is currently leading a joint research project on teacher-writer identity and the impact this has on teaching and learning. Kerry co-runs an Open University/United Kingdom Literacy Association Teachers’ Reading Group with her colleagues. She is currently a doctoral student with a strong interest in visual literacies.
Finola is a senior lecturer in primary English, and the Primary English subject lead at St. Mary's University, teaching on the Primary Education Work-based, UG and PGCE routes. She is passionate about teaching English, particularly celebrating diversity and reading and writing for pleasure and co-runs the South West London Open University/UKLA Teachers’ Reading Group with her colleagues. She has co-conducted research into students as writers, and has collaborated with The British Library learning on a project on student identity. Finola is currently involved in a joint research project on teacher writer identity and the impact this has on teaching and learning.
Karen is a Senior Lecturer in primary English at St Mary’s University. She teaches English on the Primary Education Work-based Routes, the BA Hons in Primary Education with QTS and the PGCE in Primary Education with QTS. Karen is passionate about teaching English, particularly how English can support children with the explorations of their identity and can empower them to tackle issues of social justice. She is currently studying for her professional doctorate and her research focuses on children's identity and the books that they read. She co-runs an Open University/United Kingdom Literacy Association Teachers Reading Group. She is also currently involved in a joint research project on teacher writer identity and the impact this has on teaching and learning.
Hounslow School Library Service
Hounslow School Library Service provides essential, high quality resources and support for all schools that take out a subscription.
Advice from professional librarians on all aspects of the library, including library stock, classification and layout is invaluable.
A number of annual events are provided to develop children’s book knowledge and love of reading.
Project loan books
All project loan books are tailored to teachers’ needs and complement the school’s library provision, increasing access to a wide range of books to encourage reading for pleasure and independent learning.
What our schools have to say
“I really can’t thank you and your team enough. You’ve made such a huge impact on our library and significantly improved the children’s engagement with books in our school. We think the service you provide is excellent!” Teacher from local Hounslow Primary School
Who to contact
For further information please contact Nikola Standing – email@example.com