Literacy - Enough to make you laugh

27th February 2009 at 00:00

Reluctant readers at a West Dunbartonshire school have been turned on to stories by making their own cartoons.

HMIE has highlighted the good work of St Michael's Primary, in Dumbarton, which has a number of pupils from deprived backgrounds where reading is not the norm.

The school has used animation computer software such as Photo Story and Comic Life with all P6-7 pupils to make the creation of stories more appealing. Pupils use Plasticine to make short films similar in style to the Morph cartoons shown on Tony Hart's art programmes in the 1980s (pictured).

"It has engaged children who find language and sitting with paper and a pencil off-putting," said Julie McGrogan, the headteacher, who was inspired by a session at the National Literacy Conference last year. "It's raised their motivation levels."

The scheme tapped into computers' popularity with children and encouraged them to tell stories without realising they were doing so. West Dunbartonshire Council paid for software and training. HMIE is highlighting examples of good practice in a special section on its website.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today