Please check out some of the detailed testimonials about the Books in Homes Program from some of our Principals and Books in Homes Coordinators at participating schools.
Majella Catholic Primary School, WA
“Majella Catholic Primary School is a small Catholic school in a very low socio-economic demographic. Seventy-five percent of our students are from a non-English speaking background. Books are not necessarily a priority within the family budget and therefore the Books in Homes Program is the only opportunity for many of our students to have books at home that they can access anytime. Majella first discovered the Books in Home Program several years ago and recognised the benefits that flowed through to our students immediately. Indeed, we instantly saw the benefits. There is a great deal of excitement on the faces of many students when they actually choose their books and then later when they receive their books to keep. From an education point-of-view we know that home reading was now possible. We also have seen a love of reading developing in many children over the years, especially as it is the children who are able to choose books of interest to them.
As this Program is provided to Majella as a result of the generous support of Mainfreight, it teaches the children the importance and value of generosity and, the benefits and reward in giving as much as in receiving. When the representatives from Mainfreight visit Majella for Book Giving Assemblies and get to witness the children’s excitement when receiving their books they also reap the benefit of seeing their generosity first hand. Furthermore, when Role Models attend the Book Giving Assemblies the children get to embrace words and stories and how exciting adventures can happen through reading. We have also seen improvement in the children’s literacy, whether this be through reading or writing. Also in their general knowledge as the diversity of genres is very wide in the books they can select from.
I would absolutely, without a doubt, recommend this wonderful Program for all of the aforementioned reasons.”
Lithgow Public School, NSW
“By participating in the Books in Homes Program our 440 students have had access to books-of-their-own- choice to take home and keep, which has greatly helped to promote books as valuable resources, encouraged the enjoyment of reading, as well as supported students in their literacy development.
At Lithgow Public School, our literacy results have continued to significantly improve since 2012, which we directly link to the students’ participation in the Books in Homes Program, as all students now have ownership of books to take home and keep. Ours is a low-socio school and, as such, purchasing and the affordability of literature by families is not a priority. This program has given our students the ability to continue reading at home with their own books. Three of the benefits of the Program were that:
(1) The students showed a keen interest in reading and sharing books, and literature suddenly became a ‘cool’ thing.
(2) The Premier’s Reading Challenge (PRC) was seen as a valuable activity and the choices the students made with their Books in Homes books-of-choice were added to their PRC tally.
(3) The Caught You Being Good awards were distributed during library lessons, and book prizes were handed out at the weekly K-6 assembly, thereby reinforcing the value and generosity of the Program as well as rewarding those students who were consistent and keen readers.
I would recommend this Program to other schools because it really fosters an enthusiasm for and love of reading in students of all ages. The range and quality of the literature is excellent and guaranteed to appeal to children. The looks on the students’ faces when they know their books had arrived was priceless, and the fact that every child was included was so important and genuinely made them feel special.”
Townsville West State School (Qld)
“The biggest obstacle to kids interacting with books, literacy levels, and reading prior to the Books in Homes Program was in many cases there were no books in the students’ homes, as reading was low on the ‘survival’ scale after rent, food etc. Many children came to school barely knowing what a book was, let alone having them read to them regularly. At least now younger 0-5 yr age siblings of children involved in Books in Homes are seeing the books belonging to their older brothers and sisters when they come home.
The most important benefits of the Program are that it promotes the importance of being able to read well and for a range of purposes including fun and pleasure. Our poorer families have gone from having no books in the home to 9, 18 or in some cases 27 over the first year. The number of children seen around the campus before school and in breaks that are reading books for pleasure has dramatically increased after each Book Giving Assembly. They often stop me to excitedly tell me about, and show me, the book they are reading.
I would recommend this Program to other schools because it is most generous and practical, which supports children learning to read by putting colourful, inviting and interesting books actually in their hands as well as giving them the book for them to keep and enjoy always. The true effect of Books in Homes is probably still in the future as, along with supporting the learning of school age children it is also exposing children too young to be at school to books well before we see them. That is, where we see the long term true value of the Program. Anything that regularly exposes children to books and reading before we get them in Prep helps to set them up for long term success in reading. As a result of participating on the Books in Homes Program we’ve increased student motivation towards reading outside of school. Specifically, I like the range of types and levels of books available to the children. which motivates children to share books with their brothers and sisters at home.”
Mount Isa Central State School (Qld)
“At Central we love our Books in Homes and really look forward to it. Our students get very excited when it is that time of the term to come and choose their books from the catalogue.
Some students are collecting series of books so it gives them a lot of excitement to see the next book they are waiting for is in the catalogue.
I hear squeals of delight and students saying YES throwing hands in the air when they see the delivery van delivering the 25 + cartons of Books in Homes. Every day I go to the classroom and students ask me: “When is it Books in Homes, miss?”
As we approach the end of the term with our parade and Book Giving Assembly approaching you can feel the excitement in the air looking forward to getting their book packs, especially when students can see the cartons with them waiting for the parade.
I am the librarian at our school as well as a Teacher Aide so I am always encouraging our students to bring back their library books not only to re borrow them but also to make sure they receive their Books in Homes. As soon as they hear that before I know it they are bringing their books back in a flash as they don’t want to miss out on receiving their Books in Homes book packs.
We also have a lot of students that connect Glencore with where their Mummy and Daddy work or their Aunty and Uncle, their grandparents and caregivers. This is great to hear them talking about this especially with little preppies who love getting their books and are a bit young to fully understand everything but they understand one thing—they know where their books come from and that’s at the mines across the road.
One preppie said to me last term when we were talking about Books in Homes—she said, “I know what it is… that’s where my Daddy works, Miss Caroline. They have given us lots of books, they have lots of books!”
Another thing I love to see is past students who now are in high school who come to visit me in the afternoon. I notice they are using their Books in Homes bags as their school bag. I always mention it to them and they say how they miss it and still have their books at home [from the Program], and really wished they could still get them. They reckon they would come back to primary just to get them.”
Librarian / Teacher’s Aide