Reading the Game is one of Blackpool FC Community Trust’s targeted intervention programmes and is delivered as part of our School Sport Offer. The programme aims to increase enjoyment, confidence levels and frequency of reading and writing, in addition to the ability of pupils.
Reading the game is delivered across an initial six-week period to specifically targeted disengaged pupils. Throughout the programme pupils work through a bespoke workbook. All sessions are designed to incorporate important elements of the National Curriculum and give lagging pupils the boost that they need to continue along the right path with their education.
The pupils participate fantastically throughout the programme, engaging with the coaches in a less formal environment whilst practicing their handwriting, improving their spelling, their grammar and punctuation. They also get the opportunity to read silently and aloud as well as speaking in class group discussions and broadening their vocabulary.
As part of Reading the Game, pupils complete a weekly book review getting them to read a new book each week and then use descriptive writing to review in their workbook.
The weeks are split up into a variety of different exercises to cover as much as we are able in the time we have. Pupils read and share their favourite jokes from a variety of books and take part in a treasure hunt quiz exploring a variety of different types of media (including Blackpool FC match programmes, MATCH magazine, newspapers, and a range of books for diverse abilities as well as DVD and game cases etc.) finding answers to sets of questions in teams competing against the other teams in the class.
They recap (or even learn) how to use a dictionary in a game of Dictionary Bingo locating, spelling and defining words in line with the National Curriculum words list that pupils of their age should know.
Pupils find out how to format a formal letter and find out the difference between formal and an informal writing whilst practicing their handwriting, grammar and punctuation at the same time as using their imagination to write a descriptive letter.
In one of the weeks we look at the rich history of one of the oldest clubs in the country and improve their research skills and then carry out interviews with their classmates.
In the final week class discussions take place regarding what is arguably Blackpool FC’s most famous victory in the 2010 Championship play off final and highlights are viewed, notes taken and then paragraphs are sorted so that the match report in their workbook is in the correct order and then sections of the report are read aloud by the class before highlighting Nouns, Adjectives and Verbs and if we have time using a Thesaurus to find alternative words.
Token prizes are available for struggling pupils that excel each week as well as winners of the ‘Word of the Week’ competition, which runs throughout Reading the Game and helps to widen pupils’ vocabulary incorporating homework or out of session research to find the best word they can, following specific parameters, set out depending on the ability of the group.