YOUNG people at Droitwich Spa High School are taking part in a new reading scheme to encourage boys to read using the English Premier League.

The ‘Reading Stars’ scheme is trying to show year eight boys how reading can be cool, by associating it with their favourite football players, setting up a number of ‘fixtures’ to build up their skills and confidence over 10 years using everything from red and yellow cards, to whistles, balls, training logs, and even goalposts, to make the whole experience more fun.

Every reading session starts with a warm up, and ends with a cool down, that mimics the training schedule of real footballers, linking the sport with reading for the pupils, while readers are given wrist bands and pens to make them feel part of a team.

Elizabeth Whitehouse is running the programme through the National Literacy Trust together with school librarian Heather Evans.

Mrs Whitehouse said: “This is going to be a great way to get our less motivated students to see that reading can be for them and that it is not always about reading texts that they see as ‘boring’. This programme will get them reading match reports, newspaper coverage of games, as well as football stories and poems about football so that they learn that reading is something for them.”

Mrs Evans added: “The supporting materials for this programme show Premier League players reading, and more importantly enjoying reading which is so important for our students. It really helps them to understand that reading is something that everyone can enjoy.”

The ‘Reading Stars’ scheme hopes to move pupils on from reading and discussing short texts, to selecting and reading longer texts independently. For more information visit