My brilliant idea - Loud and clear

30th January 2009 at 00:00


Ages 15-16

My "bottom set" Year 10 group was feeling demotivated and pupils were struggling to improve their reading levels. As the rest of the year group was about to embark on a coursework assignment on the opening chapters of David Copperfield, I decided to order a class set of the novel that had been adapted for English as an additional language learners.

I labelled each individual book by character, and then underlined that character's dialogue. With the dialogue underlined, all pupils were willing to have a go at reading aloud, and we discovered at the end of the unit that we were the only class to have a handle on the whole story.

I was astonished at the enthusiasm with which the pupils tackled the text, and I was delighted that their anxiety at the thought of reading aloud had been greatly reduced. The time I invested in underlining the dialogue paid off.

Fran Nantongwe is head of English at Acle High School in Norwich.

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