Learn with Maverick Early Readers

It’s always exciting to see more new book releases from the Maverick Publishing house, and to know that there are more titles to inspire children into reading is great news!

We’re great fans of the Early Readers guided reading programme by Maverick, with its book banding system approved by the Institute of Education’s colour-coded scheme. Pink is ideal for very young children, then through red, yellow, blue, green onto orange, turquoise, purple, gold and finally white for the highest level and more confident, independent readers.

The books in Maverick’s brand new release include four fiction titles (all of which are Pink banded) and four non-fiction titles. These are ‘City Animals’ (Turquoise band), ‘Going Green’ (White band), ‘Our Place in Space’ (white band) and ‘Food for Thought’ (Purple band).

Maverick Books Early Readers guided reading books, new fiction titles

The fiction titles are as delightful as those previously released, and will surely appeal to both boys and girls equally. As ever, the top-quality illustrations to the stories really set these books apart. They’re lively and colourful, with good cues to the text, which children will be sure to find engaging. The stories also each feature pages to help young learners, such as the ‘Letter Trace’ pages which we especially like, in which a child can practise forming individual letters with their finger. There are tips for parents too, with opportunities to practise the relevant high frequency and tricky words within the stories, and discussion activities, for example.

Maverick Books Early Readers guided reading books, new fiction titles

Each book in the Pink band includes two different stories of 30-50 words length, which we think is ideal, as these are long enough for children to focus fully on each story, before moving to the next. The language is natural English and avoids forcing phonics awkwardly. The more difficult words – some two-syllable words, for example – that are included allow pupils to get to grips with phonic decoding.
Look for ‘Duck is Stuck and Get the Ball’, ‘Let’s Dress Up and In the Net’, ‘Dig for Gold and Go Rocket!’ and ‘Look Out! and Dot and Dan’s Trip’.

Maverick Books Early Readers guided reading books, new non-fiction titles

We also highly recommend the new non-fiction Early Readers titles. These are a perfect length – not too long as to be off-putting for struggling readers. And the presentation is ideal for learners getting to grips with non-fiction, as the titles each include contents pages, a glossary, an index and even a quiz that will be handy for teacher’s to check children’s understanding.

Maverick Books Early Readers guided reading books, new non-fiction titles

The subjects covered fit in really well with topics in curriculum-linked learning, so it is super to see the way the material has been chosen so thoughtfully. Across all the books, we like the great blend of photographs, illustrations and the consistent use of the fun cartoon alien characters, Jake and Finn, as ‘tour guides’ to introduce the new subject matter.

All the Early Readers books are RRP £5.99 and are out now.
Trade enquiries welcome via educational suppliers.

Disclosure: Topmarks was supplied with a selection of the Early Readers books by Maverick Publishing, free of charge for a fair and honest review, with no obligation.

Into Film Festival 2019 – join in!

This free annual celebration of film, film-making and education is coming soon – this year it’ll be from 6-22 November.

Taking place each year, the Into Film Festival is designed for 5-19 year olds, aiming to help teachers and other educators inspire young people to watch, understand and make film in new and creative ways.

Into Film Festival 6-22Nov 2019

First held in 2013, the number of pupils and teachers getting involved has been growing, and this year is hoped to be the biggest and best yet!
There are over 150 films available as well as complementary events covering a wide variety of themes, at 600 venues across the UK. Looking out for top box-office hits such as Mary Poppins, Spider-Man and Horrible Histories to name a few.

Bookings open tomorrow – Thursday 5 September, so you can start making plans to claim free film tickets right now! Search for events happening near you on the Into Film Festival site.

Pupils will be able to enjoy a full film programme, with a wide range of curricular topics covered. There’ll also be inclusive options, such as audio-described, subtitled and autism-friendly screenings.

Click to watch this sneak preview video to find out more!

Into Film Festival 6-22Nov 2019

Why not start an Into Film Club today, and receive ‘early bird’ booking access to film screenings at the Festival, plus curriculum-focused resources and a DVD catalogue of over 3000 films? Sign up for free here!

Celebrate Roald Dahl Day 2019!

Who doesn’t love the fabulous stories of Roald Dahl? Young and old alike adore these rich stories to fire the imagination, so join in the celebrations for Roald Dahl Day on 13th September!

Marking the anniversary of Roald’s birthday, Roald Dahl Day is held on the 13th September every year, with story-telling fun, classroom activities and interactive ideas that children will love. It’s aimed at primary children aged 7-11 and BBC Teach will tie in with the event too, with a special lesson program that youngsters can watch.

The lesson will be produced in partnership with Puffin Schools with extracts from his books, read by famous people, who’ll be inspiring children to think about characterisation, storytelling and using persuasive language.

Matilda is introducing this year's Roald Dahl Day 2019

The theme for this year’s Roald Dahl Day is bravery, and leading the celebrations will be Matilda – all set to outwit Miss Trunchbull! Children will be asked to think about a time that they’ve been brave, and use that inspiration to create their own characters and stories. You can be part of the fun, as ideas from children all over the country will be shared on the BBC Teach site. Find out how to join in and how your school might get a mention on the program!

There’ll be lots of resources to enjoy – look out for activity sheets and a lesson guide for teachers.

Plus there is more inspiration and downloadables on the Roald Dahl website.

Don’t forget to sign up to the BBC Teach newsletter to keep updated with information about the Roald Dahl Day 2019 interactive lesson.

Try the 10 Minute Shake Up

Change4Life and Disney inspire a new campaign called
10 Minute Shake Up to boost physical activity levels during the school day.

10 Minute Shake Up initiative, encouraging physical activity for children

A recent Public Health England report has the evidence to back up what we might already ‘know’ – a strong link between being physically active and academic performance, learning and attention, within a school setting.

Change4Life is run by PHE to help families eat well, move more and live longer, to improve the nation’s health and wellbeing.
A new survey from Change4Life and Disney found that children believe they need to be ‘fast’ (49%) or ’strong’ (41%) to be active, and just a quarter see themselves as ‘sporty’ (25%). The new 10 Minute Shake Up program is designed to challenge these ideas!

10 Minute Shake Up initiative, encouraging physical activity for children

It encourages children of all abilities to be more active, beyond PE classes and especially over the summer break. The campaign hopes to show that everyone can enjoy getting active and benefit from improved wellbeing, both physically and mentally.

10 Minute Shake Up initiative, encouraging physical activity for children

The new ideas that inspire youngsters to get moving for fun – just for 10 minutes, and throughout the school day – will hopefully foster positive attitudes towards exercise that’ll last beyond the classroom.

10 Minute Shake Up initiative, encouraging physical activity for children

Each Shake Up activity is modelled on a Disney character as a fun incentive, and entry point for those who don’t feel sporty. Head to the 10 Minute Shake Up homepage for activities inspired by characters from Toy Story 4, Incredibles 2 as well as Frozen and The Lion King, and more besides.

10 Minute Shake Up initiative, encouraging physical activity for children

There are lots of free, quick-to-learn and simple games to try.
Plus… find activities including an ‘Active assembly’, ‘Active school day ideas’, ‘Active role play lesson starters’ and ideas for children and parents to use during the holidays.

Click now to find out more and to order your packs, with activities, stickers and certificates!