Reading at Brook Mead Academy  

At Brook Mead Academy, we see reading as a critical skill for life. The ability to read to a sophisticated and fluent level can be transformative and liberating. There is time for scholars to read throughout the week. 

  • Tutor time reading: We have a carefully thought-out programme of reading in tutor time in the mornings. Scholars are read to by their form tutor at least twice per week. By reading aloud, we are able to model fluent reading whilst supplementing the content of the text with key knowledge. Our texts often link to themes in our curriculum or are chosen because they are worthy of reading and enjoyable. Non-fiction texts are selected too to spark or quench curiosity.
  • Poetry by heart: Scholars learn one poem per year as part of our KS3 tutor time curriculum. Scholars are taught the meanings of the poems before learning the poem by heart to recite as a year group. This is an inclusive experience shared by both staff and scholars which exposes scholars to carefully selected poems whilst promoting both reading fluency and memory.
  • The library: We have a very well stocked, vibrant and welcoming library which is curated and overseen by our qualified and expert librarian. Every scholar visits the library and borrows books. There is lots of advice and encouragement in choosing books. Every genre and taste is catered for and the aim is for scholars to develop a love of reading and a habit of reading.
  • Independent reading weeks: Every half term, during tutor time, one week is devoted to scholars reading books that they have chosen independently to complement the texts they have read across our curricula. This helps scholars to develop their own tastes in reading.
  • Reading for Pleasure:  As part of our English curriculum, Reading for Pleasure lessons take place once per week. Texts are carefully selected to foster links with texts that are studied in English and are simply read at pace for knowledge and enjoyment.
  • Subject specific reading: In most subjects, reading is a central medium of study hence carefully chosen texts are read in a guided way to enhance understanding of key concepts. Often there is wider reading around the subject too. 

    2024-2025 tutor time reading map for all year group.

Year 7 Reading

Book Name  What is it about?  Why have we chosen it? 

Tutor Time Reading

The Odyssey retold by Geraldine McCaughrean

After then years of war, Odysseus turns his back on Troy and sets sail for home. But his voyage takes another ten years and he must face many dangers – Polyphemus and the greedy one eyed giant, Scylla the six-headed seat monster and even the wrath of the gods themselves – before he is reunited with his wife and son.  
  • Modern retelling of the epic poem, The Odyssey.  
  • Links with the study of Greeks and Romans at KS2. 
  • Exposure to rich and difficult discussions about loyalty, family, leadership, religious faith, revenge, and love. 
  • Links with our study of Latin in Year 7. 
Tutor Reading Time

Comic Classics 

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens 

Ten-year-old Pip gets the fright of his life when he meets an escaped convict in a spooky graveyard. And that’s just the beginning of an adventure that will lead him to a house full of secrets, a strange old lady and a journey to the big city to seek his fortune. But Pip is in for a BIG surprise… 


This book brings the classics to life with illustrations by Jack Noel.  

  • Links with Victorian history.  
  • Exposure to themes of poverty, social mobility, and relationships.  
  • Links with English texts studied at KS3 and KS4.  
Tutor Reading Time

Mohinder’s War by Bali Rai  

Joelle hates the Nazis who have invaded her country, so when she finds Mohinder, the RAF pilot of a plane that has crashed in the woods near her house, she knows it is up to her and her parents to hid him from the enemy. Joelle and Mohinder are soon firm friends but in occupied France, you don’t always know who to trust and their fight for survival is just beginning.  
  • Links with the study of World War II history during KS3 history.  
  • Themes of hope and resilience.  
  • Rich discussions in relation to identity, family and belonging. 
  • Exposure to different cultural perspectives.  
  • Written by a local author.  
Tutor Reading Time

First News  

First News is a newspaper for children which aims to expose them to current events and politics in a child friendly format.  
  • Exposure to non-fiction texts.  
  • Engagement with current events and politics in an accessible way. 
  • Opportunities to discuss current worldwide issues. 
Tutor Reading Time

The Brook (poem) by Alfred Lord Tennyson 

The Brook’ was a poem written in 1866. The poem explores themes of mortality, eternity and nature through images of a brook’s movements through the countryside.  


  • Shared and unifying experience of reciting poetry.  
  • Exposure to different forms of poetry.  
  • Exposure to classic poetry.  
Reading for Pleasure

Street Child by Berlie Doherty 

Jim Jarvis is a runaway. When his mother dies, he is all alone in the workhouse and desperate to escape. But London in the 1860s is a dangerous and lonely place. Jim faces contact battle to survive. Just as he finds some friends, he is snatched away and made to work for the remorselessly cruel Grimy Nick, constantly guarded by Nick’s vicious dog, Snipe. Will Jim ever be free? 


  • Links with study of Victorian history.  
  • Explores concepts of class divide and social injustice. 
  • Developing understanding and empathy for others.  
Reading for Pleasure

King of Shadows by Susan Cooper  

Performing A Midsummer Night’s Dream at London’s Globe Theatre, talented young actor Nathan Field is having the best summer ever. But as rehearsals begin, Nat is haunted by eerie echoes of the past and falls ill with a mysterious sickness.
 Waking from a fever, Nat finds himself in very different surroundings – its 1599 and Nat is now an actor at the original Globe.  
  • Exposure to fantasy genre. 
  • Links with study of Elizabethan history.  
  • Exposure to dramatic and Shakespearean conventions. 

Year 8 Reading

Book Name What is it about? Why have we chosen it?

Tutor Reading Time

The Silver Sword by Ian Serraillier

The night the Nazis take their mother away, three children escape in a dangerous scramble across the rooftops of Warsaw, where they have to learn to survive on their own. Then they meet Jan, a boy with a paperknife – the silver sword – that they recognise as belonging to their long-lost father. The sword becomes their symbol of hope as they begin the hazardous journey across war-torn Europe to find their parents.
  • Links with the study of World War II history during KS3 history.
  • Exposure to themes of hope and resilience.
  • Links to theme of hope in the poem to be learnt of by heart later in the year.
  • Promotes discussions in relation to identity, family and belonging.
Tutor Reading Time

Black and British
by David Olusoga

When did Africans first come to Britain? Who are the well-dressed Black children in the Georgian paintings? Why did the American Civil War disrupt the Industrial Revolution? These and many other questions are answered in this essential introduction to 1800 years of Black British history – from the Roman Africans who guarded Hadrian’s Wall right up to the present day.
  • Exposure to cultural and world knowledge.
  • Exposure to British and world history.
  • Links with study of British Empire during KS3 history.
  • Black British identity.
  • Explores different cultural experiences.
  • Promotes tolerance, understanding and respect. (British values).
Tutor Reading Time

“Hope” is the thing with feathers (poem) by Emily Dickinson

“Hope is the thing with feathers” is written to honour the idea of hope. The poem presents hope as a bird that lives within the human soul.
  • Exposure to different forms of poetry.
  • Explores themes of hope and optimism.
  • Use of extended metaphor and symbolism.
  • Shared experience of reciting poetry.
Tutor Reading Time

First News

First News is a newspaper for children which aims to expose them to current events and politics in a child friendly format.
  • Exposure to non-fiction texts.
  • Engagement with current events and politics in an accessible way.
  • Opportunities to discuss current worldwide issues.
Reading for Pleasure

The Weight of Water by Sarah Crossan

Armed with a suitcase and an old laundry bag, Kasienka and her mother head for England. Life is lonely for Kasienka. At home her mother’s heart is breaking; at school friends are scarce. But when someone special swims into her life, Kasienka learns that there might be more than one way for her to stay afloat.
  • Exposure to different forms of fiction – verse novel.
  • Explores experiences of immigration.
  • Tackles racism, bullying and alienation.
  • Explores ideas relating to mental health.
Reading for Pleasure

The Boy in the Tower by Polly Ho-Yen

Ade loves living at the top of a tower block. From his window, he feels like he can see the whole world beneath him. But one day, other tower blocks start falling down around him. Strange, menacing plants begin to appear and no one knows where they came from. Now their tower isn’t safe any more. Ade and his mum are trapped and there’s no way out.
  • Urban realism mixed with science fiction.
  • Explores anxiety, fear and the role of a young carer.
  • Promotes discussions in relation to inclusivity.
Tutor Reading Time

Charles Darwin’s
On the Origin of Species – picture book retelling

Pulling together Darwin’s observations from his travels around the world and his ground-breaking explanation of how species form, develop, and change over hundreds of thousands of years, On the Origin of Species has revolutionised the way we understand evolution.
  • Exposure to non-fiction texts.
  • Links with study of the living world during KS3 science.
  • Exposure to concept of natural selection and evolution in an accessible way.

Year 9 Reading

Book Name  What is it about? What is it about?
Tutor Reading Time

Heroes by Robert Cormier  

Maimed and disfigured whilst fighting in the World War Two, young Francis Cassavant is returning to his hometown as a hero. But one who must hide both his face and his identity.

For his past holds a bitter secret, one which he has vowed to revenge and which he can resolve only through his final, desperate plan: to destroy the man who betrayed him as a boy.

  • Links with the study of World War II during KS3 history.
  • Explores ideas in relation to war and heroism.
  • Explores themes of loneliness, isolation, guilt and forgiveness.
Tutor Reading Time

First News   

First News is a newspaper for children which aims to expose them to current events and politics in a child friendly format.
  • Exposure to non-fiction texts.
  • Engagement with current events and politics in an accessible way.
  • Opportunities to discuss current worldwide issues.
Tutor Reading Time

Poem – TBC  

Reading for Pleasure

Punching the Air by Ibi Zoboi  

One fateful night, an altercation in a gentrifying neighbourhood escalates into tragedy. ‘Boys just being boys’ turns out to be true only when those boys are white.

Suddenly, at just sixteen years old, Amal Shahid’s bright future is upended: he is convicted of a crime he didn’t commit and sent to prison. Despair and rage almost sink him until he turns to the refuge of his words, his art. This never should have been his story. But can he change it?

  • Links with reading of Black and British in year 8.
  • Tackles issues of racism and injustice.
  • Promotes tolerance, understanding and respect.  (British values).
  • Exposure to different forms of fiction – verse novel.
 Reading for Pleasure

Waiting for murder

by Fleur Hitchcock 

It’s a long, hot summer. As the water drains away from the reservoir, a car emerges. And there seems to be a body in it, a body that then disappears… Daniel and Florence start to investigate and uncover a long-ago robbery, missing gold and murder. When the drought breaks, everything is swept downstream and the truth is revealed…
  • Exposure to crime fiction.
  • Links with study of modern texts in KS4 English.



KS4- All Subjects Further Reading TMET