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Summary

Our students’ success will be defined by their ability to read fluently and skilfully. But despite universal acceptance of reading’s vital importance, the reading gap in our classroom remains, and it is linked to an array of factors, such as parental wealth, education, book ownership, as well as classroom practice. To close this gap, we need to ensure that every teacher has the knowledge and skill to teach reading with confidence. 

In Closing the Reading Gap, Alex Quigley explores the intriguing history and science of reading, synthesising the debates and presenting a wealth of usable evidence into how children develop most efficiently as successful readers. Offering practical strategies for teachers at every phase of their teaching career and tackling issues such as dyslexia and the role of technology, the book helps teachers to be an expert in how pupils "learn to read" as well as how they "read to learn" and explores how reading is vital for unlocking a challenging academic curriculum for every student. With a focus on nurturing pupils’ will and skill to read for pleasure, this essential volume provides practical solutions to help all teachers create a rich reading culture that will enable every student to thrive in school and far beyond the school gates.

©2020 Taylor & Francis (P)2020 Routledge

Critic reviews

"In this engaging book, Alex Quigley explores the knowledge and skills expert reading teachers need to teach reading and to nurture pupils’ desire to read. If you are developing the school reading curriculum, this accessible and timely text, which is packed with practical strategies, will be a valuable asset. In opening up the complexities of reading in an appealing and conversational manner, and paying particular attention to metacognition, Alex offers the profession evidence-informed tools to re-consider reading and six steps to close the reading gap. A book worth buying." (Teresa Cremin, Professor of Education, Open University, UK)

 

"The science of reading was never a part of my teacher training and I'd have loved a book like this. Alex Quigley's Closing the Reading Gap is everything I hoped it would be; a wonderfully enlightening follow-up to his brilliant vocabulary book. For those seeking to understand how reading works, alongside some of the associated debates, Alex gives us the in-depth research-informed analysis we’re after. He also delivers the accessibility and range of practical strategies busy teachers need to support children to read more fluently and to learn more through reading. Chapters 3 and 4 capture the key concepts we need to understand the complex processes of decoding and comprehension; it’s packed with wisdom and insights. Chapter 7, outlining an array of practical strategies for schools and teachers, is a magnificent reference for everyone working in education. I can see this book having a very significant impact." (Tom Sherrington, author and education consultant)

 "This book should be a core text for all teachers, whether trainees or experienced professionals, whatever their subject or key stage specialism. Reading success is essential for young people to access any academic curriculum and this book draws together research and effective practice across all subjects and age groups. But not only does it identify and evaluate the symptoms of reading challenges, it provides practical advice and support to 'close the reading gap.' Exam success is underpinned by effective reading tuition, and this book will help every teacher gain a greater understanding of how to teach reading constructively so that academic achievement is attainable for every pupil." (Alison Wilcox, author of the Descriptosaurus series) 

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Fascinating, practical and most enjoyable.

I'm not a teacher, but my four-year-old son and I read together quite a bit and it's one of our favourite moments of the day. I wanted to learn more about reading and how to make our reading time most beneficial for my son and his joy of learning. This book is a fascinating and extremely helpful resource, full of down-to-earth, practical advice. As a voracious bookworm myself, I also loved learning about the history and evolution of reading and some of its mechanics.
Alex Quigley is brilliant and I can't wait to read more of his books. "Closing the Reading Gap" is primarily written for teachers, but I dare say any parent will also richly benefit from reading it.
Thank you very much, Alex, for writing such a fascinating and incredibly helpful book!