‘Real, genuine, passionate readers’ - Belton teacher pens touching letter to his class

Children's books.
Photo by Simon Finlay.

Children's books. Photo by Simon Finlay. - Credit: Archant Norfolk

A primary school teacher from Belton has penned a heart-warming letter to his pupils, praising their love of reading.

Children reading. Picture: Simon Finlay

Children reading. Picture: Simon Finlay - Credit: EDP � 2001

Jon Biddle wrote the letter to his year six class at Moorlands Primary Academy, in Belton, before posting it on his blog, Reading for Pleasure.

A Letter to My Class, which was picked up by TES, has since been shared by teachers and parents.

The letter in full

Dear Deer,


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Today I realised something very exciting! Did you know that you're all readers now, every single one of you? I don't mean that you all can read, because you've been able to do that since you were in Reception and Year One. That's a different kind of reading, working out what all the sounds are and how to put them together. I mean that you're readers; real, genuine, passionate readers. I spent a lot of time thinking about it on my way to school this morning (there was bad fog so I had to drive very slowly), and I'm going to try and show you that I'm right.

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You're readers because you remind me every single time when I forget about you sharing our Poem of the Day. You're readers because you work brilliantly together to tidy up before story time, which means that you can squeeze every last minute out of it. You're readers because you all get excited whenever a new book arrives in the classroom. You're readers because you work so hard to keep the school library up and running. You're readers because you love talking about your favourite books at every possible opportunity. You're readers because you want to share the books you enjoy with children lower down the school.

In fact, now that I've started, let me be even more specific…

Lauren, you're a reader because as soon as you found out that there was another book written by Katherine Rundell, you marched straight down to the school library to find it.

Troy, you're a reader because you think very carefully about which picture book you're going to share with the children in Reception at story time.

Liam, you're a reader because you love looking at books with beautiful illustrations and trying to recreate them.

Charley, you're a reader because you got so emotionally involved when we read One Dog and His Boy together and sat there with tears streaming down your face.

Isobel, you're a reader because you squealed with joy when you found out that there might be a third Varjak Paw book one day.

Nico, you're a reader because you insisted that your mum read Wonder straight after you did, so that she could see what you were so excited about.

Gracie, you're a reader because you spend every spare minute talking about how amazing you think Lyra Belacqua and Katniss Everdeen are.

Rubie, you're a reader because you read the books that you enjoy and you don't care what anyone else thinks about them.

Hollie, you're a reader because you spend your playtimes reading the Eddie poems by Michael Rosen to anyone who'll listen.

Jack, you're a reader because you love sending the class photos on Twitter of the purchases you make at the different bookshops you visit.

Andrew, you're a reader because you can recall almost every record from Guinness World Records 2017 and you know straight away where to find any that you're not sure of.

Alfie, you're a reader because you can remember exactly what happened on page 264 of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (and on any page of any other Harry Potter book).

Marley, you're a reader because you've read so many books and you're always happy to share recommendations with your friends.

Layla, you're a reader because you can give a detailed plot summary of every Jacqueline Wilson book ever published.

Oliver, you're a reader because you've quietly been working your way through the Young Samurai series since September.

James, you're a reader because you love finding out extra facts about whatever topic we're studying, and you start virtually every sentence with 'Did you know...?'

Romy, you're a reader because you always want to try books that you shouldn't really be reading quite yet. Don't worry, their time will come…and when it does, you'll love them even more.

Leo, you're a reader because you carefully take your signed Tom Palmer book out of your drawer and sit reading it with a contented smile on your face.

Jack, you're a reader because you're not afraid to change a book that you're not enjoying.

Gabriella, you're a reader because you read Bridge to Terabithia time and time again. It's wonderful that you enjoy it so much!

Christian, you're a reader because you come in every morning (without fail!) and tell me about the latest developments in the Once series.

Sonny, you're a reader because you turn up at school book council meetings absolutely full of fantastic suggestions about which books we can buy for the school.

James, you're a reader because, after a whole year of reading nothing but Beast Quest, you were brave and tried the Ranger's Apprentice books and The Hobbit. And Christian was right, you loved them!

Taylor, you're a reader because you discovered the Barnaby Grimes books by Chris Riddell and are happy to tell everyone you meet about how exciting you think they are.

Maddison, you're a reader because you got so angry and frustrated during 'that' chapter in Wonder.

Have I proved my point Deer Class? I really hope so. Thinking about all of this today meant that it was the most heart-warming and enjoyable drive to school that I've had for a very long time, so thank you all!

Mr Biddle

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