New classic books in schools initiative launched

16 Feb 2016

3 mins
Group of children watching films in a sports hall
Group of children watching films in a sports hall

A new initiative launched by Schools Minister Nick Gibb and Penguin will see 100 classic books offered to schools as a way to encourage children to appreciate a wide range of texts.

Cinematic adapations of several titles in the initial 100, including  Twelve Years A Slave Jane EyreAnna Karenina, and A Christmas Carol, are available to order when you set up an Into Film Club and have accompanying resources to help explore the themes of the texts. 73% of Into Film Club leaders surveyed said that using our resource helped boost students' literacy. 

Speaking on the initiative, Nick Gibb had this to say:

It is important that all pupils in secondary school are taught to read and enjoy challenging books from amongst the world's greatest literature...But this is not the end of the debate and I want this to be a springboard for discussion on the impact a great story can have on us all.

The commonality across all these titles, and all classic films, books, and plays, is great storytelling. Stories transcend form and can engage even the most hard-to-reach learners. Our Reel to Real suite of resources, in partnership with the V&A, focuses on some of literature's most enduring stories. 

By examining cinematic adaptations of work from Charles Dickens, William Shakespeare, J.B. Priestley, and Jane Austen, alongside the original texts and selections from the museum's collections, these titles are made far more accessible to young people, and can stimulate a greater interest in and appreciation for classic literature. We welcome this new initiative from Penguin, which intends to do the same.

As part of a limited period offer, schools will be able to purchase classroom sets for the equivalent of £1 per copy between March and June 2016, for delivery in time for the new school term in September 2016. Schools can register here.

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