WOODBRIDGE primary student Charlotte Nelson has gone from reluctant reader to bookworm after finding her reading confidence through a buddy-support program.
Charlotte (9), of Swan View, joined the student2student reading project run by The Smith Family in partnership with her school.
Her grandmother Carmel Wasley said Charlotte was reading above her age group after being a year behind and reads up to five books a month.
“For the first time, she has the confidence to read out loud in class and has presented at a school assembly,” she said.
“Her literacy has improved and her reading ability has impacted on all her school work.”
Charlotte said she likes to read funny stories and Andy Griffiths is among her favourite authors.
“When Nan tells me to go and read she says when I can stop, but now I don’t want to stop,” she said. The student2student program run by the not-for-profit is an early-intervention project for children behind in their reading ability.
Children in years 3 to 8 are paired with trained student buddies who listen to them read over the phone, two to three times a week for 18 weeks.
Research shows one of the best ways to support children with reading difficulties is for the help to come from peers.
Personal details of reading buddies are held in trust and Charlotte only knows her buddy is called Claudia.
“As we sped through the books, I could see that Charlotte was enjoying her reading so much that during the week she read some of the books by herself, then being able to tell me about it,” Claudia said.
The Smith Family has 26 readers on the reading program in the Midland area.