Pupils develop literacy skills at ‘Voices’ Festival

by Vashti Turner  on June 10, 2016  in  Academy News Creativity Drama Literacy Partnership Reading

Our students at KAA are today taking part in a rich celebration of literacy and language at a one-day festival organised by the National Literacy Trust.

The Voices festival at the academy on Friday 10 June is part of the National Literacy Trust’s Literacy for Life programme, which Kensington Aldridge Academy has been taking part in since 2014.  Funded by the JJ Charitable Trust, the programme equips pupils with the academic language they need to succeed in subjects across the curriculum. It is supported by author and linguist, Professor David Crystal.

110 KAA pupils will take part in the festival, where they will celebrate and develop their reading, writing, speaking and listening skills. Voices will begin with a keynote speech from esteemed author Alan Gibbons.IMG_2286

Pupils will then have the opportunity to develop their writing skills in workshops led by writers including spoken word poet Adam Kammerling and Times Book of the Week winner, Christopher Edge. Focus will be placed on supporting pupils to develop skills for professional writing beyond the classroom.

Pupils will also be inspired to be creative as they are introduced to language techniques used in different formats including script writing. They will also have the chance to explore their own regional voices and heritage through performance poetry, story writing and drama.

To commemorate the 400th anniversary since Shakespeare’s death this year, Voices will conclude with an abridged performance of Macbeth by students working with The Globe Theatre.

Susan Aykin, who leads the Literacy for Life programme at the National Literacy Trust said:

“The Voices festival is a chance to celebrate the fantastic work pupils at Kensington Aldridge Academy have done as part of Literacy for Life, while developing their reading, writing, listening and speaking skills ahead of the third year of the programme.

Academic language is crucial for success in the classroom, yet our regional dialect can also be a large part of our identity and self-expression. The festival will give pupils the chance to explore and play with language, while learning from leading playwrights, poets and authors.”

Kensington Aldridge Academy Principal David Benson said:

“Academic reading, writing and speaking are deeply embedded in our teaching at Kensington Aldridge Academy as we know that these skills are essential to our students’ success. Every morning in the academy starts with a reading lesson, and all teachers are trained to develop reading, writing and speaking skills through the delivery of their subjects.

We are thrilled to be celebrating and strengthening our partnership with the National Literacy Trust as a Literacy for Life member by taking part in the Voices festival. This event is a fantastic opportunity for our students to hear from celebrated authors and poets who will inspire their creativity and encourage the development of these fundamental skills.”

Literacy for Life puts literacy at the heart of whole school improvement and is designed to reduce the gap between pupils eligible for free school meals and their peers, by addressing the key language and literacy deficit that many disadvantaged students bring to secondary school. It is being piloted in six schools from the Aldridge and Ormiston academy chains, including Kensington Aldridge Academy.

Find out more at www.literacytrust.org.uk/literacyforlife.



National Literacy TrustAbout the National Literacy Trust
We are a national charity dedicated to raising literacy levels in the UK. Our research and analysis make us the leading authority on literacy. We run projects in the poorest communities, campaign to make literacy a priority for politicians and parents, and support schools.

Visit www.literacytrust.org.uk to find out more, donate or sign up for a free email newsletter. You can also find us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

The National Literacy Trust is a registered charity no. 1116260 and a company limited by guarantee no. 5836486 registered in England and Wales and a registered charity in Scotland no. SC042944. Registered address: 68 South Lambeth Road, London SW8 1RL.

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