“Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.”
― Frederick Douglass

International Literacy Day was introduced by UNESCO 50 years ago as a way to raise awareness around the importance of literacy and the ability it has to empower individuals. Literacy still remains one of the most significant factors in education today and affects a student’s development throughout their whole life. Some examples of this include providing better opportunities in life, promoting a sense of community, encouraging social interaction, developing communications skills, and building up self-esteem.

To celebrate this special day we’re providing some resources and tips to help improve literacy in the classroom:

Word games

Word games are a fun and easy way to get your students using their brains and improving their reading and writing skills. Activities such as crosswords and word searches are great ways to introduce more vocabulary and new phrases as well as improving spelling and word recognition. You can create your own word searches via Discovery Education’s Puzzle Maker

Word bingo is another activity which allows students to improve their overall literacy levels as well as bringing out their competitive side! It typically works by allowing students to match words that they hear to what they see in front of them. You can use this bingo card generator to create a variety of activities for your class!

scrabble word game

Story writing activities

Storytelling is a fun way for students to use their imagination, practise their writing skills and also improve their literacy by reading and critiquing others’ work. Creating stories will require students to use descriptive language, learn how to structure sentences and paragraphs, create dialogue, and develop characters. Setting them a story exercise, whether it’s written or verbal, is an effective way for student to practice these skills and express themselves! For inspiration, visit Story Arts for some activity ideas that you can implement in your lesson.

Interactive language activities

Interactive activities and quizzes are a great way to get students to actively participate while learning something along the way! A great activity to start the lesson is Spiral’s English warm-up where students take part in a quickfire of questions, replacing the word ‘nice’ and submitting their answers via their personal devices. Spiral uses real language which means that students are required to write full sentences while working on their grammar, punctuation and spelling. Why not give it a try and also create some of your own English quizzes?

spiral activity

Reading aloud

Reading aloud is a great way to get students confident with speaking in front of their peers and also tackling some of those tricky or unfamiliar words out loud. Whether it’s reading from a short story, poem, or song lyric, this activity is not only beneficial during lessons but also something that they can easily continue at home. This list of poems are sure to spark interest and are just what students need to practice their reading aloud skills – perfect for sharing in class!

Do you have any tips for improving literacy in the classroom? Tweet us at @SpiralEducation and let us know!