Neal is a KS1 teacher who helps readers, even the reluctant ones, develop a love for reading through exercise.
I coach football to 3-4 year olds and I have always wondered how engaged these young children actually are. It was at this point that I thought of combining reading with football.
I was so convinced that this could work and had such a burning desire to go with this, that I searched through (quite literally) hundreds of books that I could create lesson plans for. Over the course of that year, I created 18 lesson plans from children’s literature, in which children immerse themselves in and take part in football activities linked to the story.
Children can become so disengaged in those early stages of development that teaching and learning can become difficult and frustrating. Cleverly combining children’s favourite literature like ‘We’re Going On A Bear Hunt’ and ‘Lost and Found’ with physical activity engrosses children (in particular disengaged readers) to focus and clearly see the links between sport and reading.
The results from those type of learners has been phenomenal. A significant rise in the interest and importance of reading.
As I am a full time teacher, I started the company Kickstarters, with the help of some like-minded and equally enthusiastic coaches.
I believe that this is a new, innovative approach to promoting reading which also promotes physical education, so much so, that I have had 6 of the lesson plans created into interactive, unique plans.
Whilst working as a key stage one teacher, Neal attended a fantastic CLPE training course which highlighted the importance of reading. It became clear to him that books can be used as a vehicle to bring children’s imagination to life whilst also raising their academic achievement. He came away feeling inspired. As well as being a teacher, he is also a football coach, and during this school year, he developed a unique idea - Kickstarters.
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