Rhythm For Reading Mentoring Programme

Partner: Goodrich Community Primary School, East Dulwich, London
Partner type: Maintained School
Project category: Volunteering

The Rhythm for Reading mentoring programme was the brainchild of Marion Long, founder of Rhythm for Reading, which uses rhythm-based activities to help improve children’s ability to tackle multi-syllabic words, phrases and sentences with greater fluency. Having delivered the scheme in a number of primary schools across the UK, Marion approached Alleyn’s with the idea of running a mentoring programme alongside it as another means of tracking students’ progress in reading. It was not long before we found ourselves embarking on a five-week pilot scheme, during which time five of our Sixth Form students mentored 19 Year 4 students from a local state school, Goodrich Primary School. The students read individually with their mentors for ten minutes each week, following the ten-minute Rhythm for Reading sessions. We have now expanded the scheme and are delivering the mentoring programme within our enrichment sessions. Alleyn’s Sixth Formers have now mentored over 60 Year 5 pupils.

 

 
 

Aims of the project

Strengthening Alleyns’ links with local primary schools;
Providing a primary school with an effective accelerated reading programme;
Providing senior school pupils with an opportunity for enrichment by volunteering in the local community as mentors, helping young children who are struggling with reading, and working towards building a model of best practice illustrating school-to-school partnership in action.

Background and goals

The mentoring programme was the brainchild of Marion Long, founder of Rhythm for Reading, which uses rhythm-based activities to help improve children’s ability to tackle multi-syllabic words, phrases and sentences with greater fluency. Having delivered the scheme in a number of primary schools across the UK, Marion approached Alleyn’s with the idea of running a mentoring programme alongside it as another means of tracking students’ progress in reading.

Resources

Alleyn's currently funds the project at Goodrich. We spend one hour there a week.

Impact

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Question

 

Claire’s

 

Response

 

 

 

What did you think of the music


programme?


 

It was fun and interesting.

 

 

What did you like about the programme? I liked learning notes and I liked learning

 


music.


 

How did it make you feel? It makes me happy and interested in

 


music.


 

How was it, when you read in the library? Really fun.


 

 

Have you noticed a change in your

 

reading?

 

 

I’ve been able to read more difficult words.

 

Have you noticed a change in your

 

concentration?

 

 

Yes.

 

 

How do you feel about that? I’m excited!

 


Claire had worked with mentor three from February to March. She made


strong gains in her attitude, engagement, fluency and expression towards the


end of the programme.


In the reading assessments, Claire read three passages in January and


February, but four passages in March. Her reading fluency was measured at


Level 2. Prior to the programme, there were no rhythmically stable sentences


in her baseline reading fluency. She read 43% of the passage in a


rhythmically stable manner in February. In March, 66% of sentences were


rhythmically stable. Claire showed awareness of grammatical elements in


every sentence that she read in each assessment.


Table 6: Claire: Changes in scores between January and March


Accuracy

 

Comprehension

 

Rate

 

 

 

2015

 

 

 

Jan

 

March

 

Jan

 

March

 

Jan

 

March

 

 

Reading

 

age

 

 

 

07:04

 

08:06

 

07:09

 

9:04

 

9:02

 

10:03

 

Std

 

score

 

 

 

100

 

107

 

102

 

108

 

105

 

113

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fig. 4: Claire: Summary of changes in reading age

 

Fig. 5: Claire: Mentor observations

 

 

 

 

 

Pupil involvement

Year 12 mentors work with under-achieving Year 3 pupils.

Frequency and duration

Weekly mentoring sessions. This has now been running for two-and-a-half years.