New Reading Hour Initiative

Pupils gathered in the library to listen to Headmistress, Mrs McKendrick reading extracts from Cat’s Eye by Margaret Atwood

2 October 2019

As part of the focus on reading this term, Reading Hour is a new initiative to provide a space and time for all girls to come together to share their enjoyment of reading. To mark the launch of Reading Hour, girls gathered in the warm and inviting library space in the Murray Centre and were treated to cakes and Mrs McKendrick reading from Margaret Atwood’s gripping novel about childhood bullying, Cat’s Eye.

Learning Resources Manager, Mrs Jenny Hill said, “The girls and staff in attendance were riveted by the childhood memories of painter, Elaine Risley, as she recalled the subtle ways in which her friend and tormentor, Cordelia, controlled and bullied her. Atwood’s writing is full of imagery and, in her description of both character and setting, she creates a lasting memory of these events. Mrs McKendrick recalled the impact that the ‘bridge over the ravine’ incident had when she first read the book.”

The Reading Hour will happen between 6.30pm and 7.30pm every weekday night, providing an opportunity for all girls to come into the library to choose, read and share books, with the support of both library staff and Sixth Form Literary Seniors, Madison and Risa. There will be opportunities to discuss authors, write short book reviews and to hear other members of staff and girls reading from their favourite books. Reading for pleasure is recognised as having significant academic and wellbeing benefits and a dedicated Reading Hour is one of many ways that girls at Downe House are being encouraged to make time in their busy schedules for reading.

Find out more about why reading for pleasure is so important at Downe House

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