Library Newsletter Issue 5

Library Newsletter Issue 4

Library Newsletter Issue 3

Library Newsletter Issue 2

Library Newsletter Issue 1


#bookvending #goldencoin


Latest News

World Book Day March 2023

Click the image for our activities


20 books for Teens to Read Before They Turn 18

Reading can be a great way for teens to unplug and relax

Click below for Ms Hickey's recommendations



Launch of our New Reading Routes 

Click below to view our reading routes map

The SCA Library

A message from the LRC Manager/Librarian, Ms A Hickey. 

The Library (also known as the Learning Resource Centre or LRC) is staffed all day and open Monday to Friday. Students can access the facility before school, break and lunch (with a pass collected at break from the LRC, after school, and with their class teacher’s permission during lessons. 

The Library has recently had a re vamp and we now have a lovely tranquil reading corner where students can relax and read on beanbags. Along with 20 computers and laptops this makes it an ideal place for students.  

 We have a large selection of books here at the Academy library which are all on Accelerated Reader and colour coded making it very accessible for the students to choose their books at their reading level. Many new titles will be available from September. 

Homework Club runs in the library Monday – Friday 3pm – 4pm, homework can also be done at break and lunch times. 

The library can be used from 8.00am – 8.25am Monday – Friday. Students may also use the library at break and lunch to access computers, read a book or just socialise with friends. We also have a reading club every Friday after school where any student is welcome to attend. 



Year 7, 8 & 9 students take part in an Accelerated Reader (AR) Lesson in the library once a fortnight with myself and another member of staff, Accelerated Reader is where students take a quiz on the books they are reading. This shows us that they are understanding what they are reading and helps us to identify any problems they may be having with their reading.  

All new Year 7 students are given a library induction lesson when they start in September.  

Students in the academy can win prizes for reading the most words and we run competitions between the classes doing Accelerated Reader. We have a Millionaire wall where students can work their way up to reading a million words and over. For this they get rewarded with a certificate, a reading badge and a reading book of their choice. Presently we have 14 Word Millionaires!  Great work! Let's keep building on this.  

The library runs themed day competitions like Roald Dahl Day where you can win prizes especially if you find the Golden Ticket, it also runs many literacy based activities in the library to make it fun but learning at the same time. 


Reading Routes

Salford City Academy believes that reading is central to the development of our students and has implemented ‘Reading Routes’ for our students to encourage as many students as possible to read for pleasure.  A key aim of our ‘Reading Routes’ initiative is to foster a love of reading for leisure and pleasure whilst widening the cultural experiences of our students and ultimately broadening their learning beyond the core curriculum and opening their minds to a different world.

We  have launched reading routes to our students today who have reacted with excitement and have already started to choose the books on our routes. In addition, students will embrace the programme as they immerse themselves into a variety of different books that they previously might not have envisioned themselves reading. Whilst helping to improve their confidence and self-esteem through developing their reading skills. Reading Routes will also strengthen the school community through a shared reading experience.

As part of the nine main reading routes, students will be exposed to a range of genres:

  • Sport
  • Adventure
  • Poetry
  • Wellbeing
  • Fantasy
  • Comedy
  • Gothic/Horror
  • Classics
  • Friendship

In addition, we have added our DEAR collection and our REACT Values to explore

Not only do our book choices encourage students to engage with genres they might not usually find themselves reading, but they will also be exposed to unfamiliar topics to broaden their understanding of the world around them. It is important that our books choices, in the form of both fiction and non-fiction books, reflect the range and interest of our students.

As part of the Reading Routes programme, there is a route map, which consists of 12 different routes (genres), with around 66 books in total along the routes.

Concurrently, staff will also be reading a book from each route to further encourage discussions and build a sense of community based around reading.  The act of collaborative reading will create further engagement for our students as they find a network of staff and students who are also reading the same book. This collaboration will allow us to explore the titles in detail through form leaning time, assemblies and by making a connection with our books’ authors.

As a further reward students are given a Reading Route Metro Pass for every book they read they receive a stamp. For every themed line they  complete they receive a prize.

Read 5 books for 50 House Points

Read 10 books for 100 House Points

Read 15 books for every 150 House Points

Read 20 books for 200 House Points

Read 25 books for a Special Prize

Click on the link below to view our reading routes map


Ms Hickey's Recommended Reads: Click on your year group to see the reccommendations.


About the Teaching & Learning Resource Centre 

Our exciting Teaching and Learning Resource Centre situated in the heart of the Academy offers state of the art provision for all our students.  Our full time Learning Resource Centre Manager Ms Hickey ensures that there are a plenty of activities and events to engage students and promote literacy. Some of these are Author Visits and the Salford Schools Book Award. 

Books are updated termly, while the school newsletter, magazines, Careers and College information and other assorted reading material are available in the LRC.


SPARX Reader

Sparx Reader 

Sparx reader is reading, comprehension and vocabulary programme that gets all young people reading regularly to help improve their Literacy.  

Year 7,8,9 and 10 students are set homework each week on Sparx Reader. Students are set the task of reading a book of their choice on the platform each week. Students need to collect 200 SRP per week to complete their homework. This equates to around 20 minutes of slow, concise and accurate reading per week. SRP points, or Sparx Reader Points are awarded to students for completing their homework. This is how we track their student’s progress and engagement. Once students have completed a placement test, the ‘library’ on Sparx Reader will open and students can select a book to read for homework. As students read, they will be asked some comprehension questions to check their understanding and to ensure they are completing their homework weekly. Tasks are personalised based on each student's reading ability so that every student can be successful with their reading. The books that a student can choose from are carefully chosen so that the text is accessible yet suitably challenging. 

Do students read whole e-books? 

Yes, students read whole e-books on the platform, not just short excerpts. Each story has been carefully broken up into passages, and at the end of a passage, a student will be asked a few questions about that part of the story. When they complete the questions, they will move onto the next part of the book.  

Does it have a range of books suitable for all reading ages? 

We have e-books from a Sparx Level 1, which is roughly equivalent to a reading age of just over 6 up to 16+ which includes classic literature such as Wuthering Heights. Gold readers can read any paperback book from their school library - some books require teacher validation before they can be read. There are enough books so that students at every level always have a choice of books to read. Students identified as Gold Readers will record their reading onto the platform themselves as a record of their personal reading. 

At what level are students allowed to read books of their own choice? 

Students who are new to Sparx Reader will be given a selection of carefully selected e-books which they can work through over several weeks. This allows us to understand whether they are able to read carefully and are motivated to independently finish a book. Those that demonstrate they can do this will then be able to add their own books to the system. We do not use students' level or reading age to decide when to unlock this feature, meaning weaker readers will be able to add their own books if they are reading carefully and are motivated to complete books independently. Similarly, if stronger readers cannot demonstrate that they can read the e-books carefully and remain motivated to complete books, they will continue to only have access to the Sparx Reader e-books. 

How do I log in? 

Students should first select their school in the drop down menu and then enter their login details. These are the same login details they use for Sparx Maths. If a student forgets their password, they can request a password change from their teacher directly. 


Academic Reading Lists:



Library Newletter - Edition 1




SCA Reading Dog

Meet Fly SCA reading Dog. He will be visiting the school once a month to encourage some of our students with their reading . Fly also works with the Police as their Wellbeing dog and regularly visits residents in Nursing homes.


Reading to dogs helps children develop their reading skills, encourages positive behaviour and helps build confidence and self-esteem. Reading to dogs inspires children to have fun and enjoy the experience of reading. All over the country, children are learning to love reading with the support of these amazing doggy companions.

Reading aloud and storytelling has always been very important to me reading stories aloud can help build confidence and improve literacy skills. Reading to dogs is a fantastic, innovative idea – it will help boost the confidence of children who are nervous of reading aloud in front of a class, for example, and will encourage a lifelong love of books and reading.


Our Library Aims To...

  • Stock resources to aid and enhance teaching and learning, to stimulate leisure interests and the personal reading of staff and students. 

  • Foster positive attitudes to reading, books, learning and information and communication technology. 

  • Provide an appropriate environment for learning, including facilities for using a variety of media. 

  • Help pupils gain an interest in books and reading to help them long term in varied walks of life. 

What Will You Find In The Library?

  • A large number of fiction books, a collection of non-fiction books on many subjects. 

  • A computerised book catalogue (Accelerated Reader) 

  • Computers connected to the Academy network to use for research and homework. 

  • Regular competitions all literacy based 

  • Themed days -World Book Day  

Borrowing from the Library

Students can borrow two books for up to two weeks, the return date will be stamped with the date they are due back. No fines are charged for late books, however if a book is lost or damaged payment for the book will be asked for by a letter being sent home or a replacement book will be asked for. Books need to be renewed if students wish to keep them for longer. 

Students are welcome to request new titles. New stock is added all year round of non-fiction and fiction books. 

Additional Resources

Supporting students with Literacy at home   


“Reading is the Gateway for children that makes all other learning possible”    

                                                                      Barack Obama 

Reading really is the key to success. The National Literacy Trust research highlights the link between enjoyment of reading and attainment and shows that the longer children can keep an enjoyment of reading going, the greater the benefits in the classroom. Twelve-year-olds who enjoy reading have a reading age 2.1 years higher than their peers who don’t enjoy reading and this rises to a gap of 3.3 years for fourteen-year-olds. 

Suggestions what you can do to support your child’s reading at home. 

  • Make time to read. Set a regular time to read together during the day so your child has a reading routine. Little and often works best. Reading for just 30 minutes a day can make a huge difference.  

  • Let your child choose what to read. Join your local library for free and your child can pick from a wide selection of books that suit his/her interests. 

  • Take regular trips to the library with your child. Explore what is available in the children’s section or young adult section together or ask the librarian to recommend suitable books. Often, students think they don’t enjoy reading but, in many instances, this is because they have not found the right book. Asking for advice from librarians and teachers is important. There’s a book out there for everyone!  

  • If your child is a reluctant reader of fiction, encourage reading through different reading materials and formats. As well as fiction, there is a world of comics, magazines, e-books, read-along audio books and non-fiction for your child to discover.                                         


If your child is struggling to read, share strategies with them about what they can do to breakdown the text. Talk to your child’s English teacher so you can build on the strategies they are using to break down the text. Common strategies include asking questions breaking down sentences into units of meaning and using different strategies to work out the meaning of new words (Word Attack strategies.)  All students in Year 7 have access to Accelerated Reader, Bedrock and some students have access to Lexia, and they will be given their log in details in Term 1.  Encourage your child to complete these activities carefully and ask them about how it will help them to read for understanding in all subjects. All students at SCA will be aware of the reading process and this structure supports students in becoming better readers.                                                                                         

  • Be positive. Praise your child for trying hard at their reading and let them know it is okay to make mistakes. This will encourage them to show determination and continue reading for pleasure.  

  • Talk to your child about what they are reading so reading becomes a social and shared experience for them. Ask questions before they read, whilst they are reading and after they have read the book. This will bring the book to life for them and make reading more enjoyable. It will also support your child in reading well because questions will encourage them to reflect and evaluate what they read and make inferences. This will encourage your child to read for pleasure which increases their chance of becoming a lifelong reader. 

Questions to ask before your child has started reading the book 

  • Why have you chosen this book? 

  • Have you read any books by this author before? 

  • Will this book challenge you? 

  • Have you asked the librarian to recommend any other books by your favourite author? 

A lot of students read books from the same series and may not choose other books.  

For example, a lot of students read Horrid Henry, Diary of a Wimpy Kid and books by David Walliams and Jacqueline Wilson. It is important to read more challenging books i.e. books by different authors and books written before 1960. This will develop students’ reading skills, so they read well. 

Question to ask whilst your child is reading the book 

  •  What has happened so far?  

  •  What do you predict will happen? Why? 

  •  Who is your favourite character so far? Why? 

Questions to ask after your child has read the book 

  •  What happened in the book? Did it surprise you? Why? 

  •  Who is your favourite character and why? 
  •  Would you recommend this book to other students? Why? 

  • What did you think about the author’s style of writing? 

  •  Did it interest you as a reader? Why? 

Give books as treats and presents so children value reading and have a more positive attitude towards it.  

Model reading so your child sees you reading for pleasure and understands that reading is important. Talk to them about books you are enjoying or news articles that you have found interesting. Be a reading role model and if your child sees you enjoying and valuing books, they can be greatly inspired to read too.  


Click here for parental support with Spelling

Clike here for parental support with reading


Wave 1

Students identified as having a SS of 85 and below

(81 students)

11 students EAL KS4-

 4 students IDL

Wave 2

Students identified with a SS between


(66 students)

Wave 3

Students identified with a SS above 90

(52 students)

Wave 4

Students identified with a SS above 95

(302 students)


1-2-1 Literacy


Intervention/ IDL (KS4) during timetabled lesson.

Accelerated Reader

During English lesson once a fortnight.

Accelerated Reader

Challenging or extension problems within the class or for homework.

Supported by

Literacy HLTA

Learning Resource Manager and English Teacher.

Learning Resource Manager

Subject Teachers.

Social Time

Lexia extra support

Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday lunchtime.

Daily extra support in the morning, lunchtimes and after school in the Library.

Daily extra support in the morning, lunchtimes and after school in the Library.

Reading and Poetry clubs

Reading more challenging texts

Challenge Club

Learning Resource Centre

Daily extra support in the morning, lunchtimes and after school in the Library

. Silver Stories Programme

. Prefect- Reading Buddies

. Parent reading volunteers

. Author visits

. Word Millionaire

. Silver Stories programme

. Word Millionaire

Challenging Reads

Wave Intervention

Classroom teacher

. DEAR programme delivered everyday with Oracy DEAR every Friday,

. Use of knowledge Organisers which have tier 3 vocabulary

. Target use of TA’s to support in the classroom

. The Big Write

. Key vocabulary narrated and shared every lesson

. Quality first teaching and use of the SCA (I-We-You) model and incorporating opportunities for reading into lessons

. All ITT and ECT’S to receive specific Literacy training

. CPD on planning for Literacy and applying consistent methods

. Subject specific reading lists shared with students

Parental engagement/home learning

Communication with parents of pupils on Lexia Programme

Accelerated Reader information on Academy Website

Development of Library/Literacy webpage on Academy Website

Literacy Pack for Year 6 students

Reading Log to use with parents

Parent sessions ‘How to support with reading’

Incentives and rewards

Regular rewards issued through postcards sent home

Certificates awarded every half term

Badges awarded for reading

Reward trips and treats

End of year celebration for improved literacy levels

Termly competition linked to Culture of Excellence

Author visits


United Learning comprises: United Learning Ltd (Registered in England No: 00018582. Charity No. 313999) UCST (Registered in England No: 2780748. Charity No. 1016538) and ULT (Registered in England No. 4439859. An Exempt Charity). Companies limited by guarantee. Registered address: United Learning, Worldwide House, Thorpe Wood, Peterborough, PE3 6SB.

Financial Accountability and Freedom of Information
Website Terms, Cookies and Privacy

United Learning