Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Reading quiz

Quizzes are being used to encourage children to read. There are 67,000 schools in the world using the Accelerated Reader programme invented in 1986 by "an American mother". According to Cyril Taylor, chairman of a schools trust in the UK, 150,000 children a year are going into secondary schools (at age 11) unable to read. Now, 1500 schools in the UK have signed up to the programme "Renaissance Learning", which has a library of 8000 quizzes and writes 400 new ones a month. I read a story about this in today's Times and had a look at the Renaissance Learning site to see what these quizzes are like. Unfortunately, you can't see any, you have to buy them. Also you can only see about 4 book titles (Including one called "When Mum Threw Out the Telly"). Disappointing, as I quite liked the idea of picking a few books and doing the quizzes (the Times article mentioned Harry Potter and Shakespeare), but not enough to buy the software (or whatever format they are in), sight unseen. Surely to get customers RL could have a sample quiz on their website?