School Council - Our Library Project 2018/19

Our fabulous new library project is complete - the official opening was 02/04/2019.

Please read below to learn all about our incredible journey...

Update January 2020

A huge thanks to all the parents who have scanned and added to our library system thousands of books over the last couple of months; Junior Librarian is installed and in use. The whole school have had an assembly on how to take out, return and reserve books. Our children are raring to go and our library space is still looking amazing!

Update September 2019

Rocket funding success! Our 5 computers have been fully installed into our library now so the children have this as an additional resource to use. A huge thank you from the children and staff to all of our supporters who donated and helped spread the word! These computers will have Junior Librarian installed onto them in November which is a tool that will help the children select books, give book reviews and the children will be able to check out books using the system.

Update July 2019

We did it!

What do we want?

We would like to buy 5 new desktop computers to put into the computer area in our new library. As you can see on the photograph it is looking pretty bare!

Watch this video to see the journey of our project and the children's incredible reactions to our amazing new learning space!


The library project journey, written by the Year 6 members of the School Council..

"Here at Grappenhall Heys we really love reading and have been involved in our fantastic new library to inspire young authors like us. Asschool councillors, it is our role and responsibility to take reading to the next level. Around school, we have already made some changes to promotereading. For example, reading corners within each classroom- which we like to call Starbooks! However, since September, our main project has always been our new library and learning space.


It feels like just yesterday when we voted for the layout and how we felt the library should look like and what it should incorporate. We considered what it would look like, which authors and titles should fill the shelves and discussed this with our peers back in class.

This is when things began to get exciting; we started asking our peers for ideas and how they felt it would enhance their learning. We soon found out that they wanted the books to come to life. We then began to think about how we could make this happen.

Over the Christmas holidays, the builders arrived to start the first part of our project and the wall was knocked down between the computer suite and the old library.

We really hope you share our enthusiasm for this space, as we cannot wait to begin using it. Even though, in year 6 we only have one term left to enjoy our new library- we are confident that we have set the wheels in motion for the future children of Grappenhall Heys to foster a real love of books and reading"

December 2018-Febuary 2019. The wall between the existing ICT suite and library was knocked down to create a much bigger space for the children to explore literacy.....

Original Designs..

The designing of this space has brought the whole school community together: children, parents, teachers, governors - all having a voice, to plan such an important space at in our school. The school council meetings have focused on the library project throughout the year.

There are many more exciting elements to this image which, has been informed by the voice of the school community and will capture the children's imaginations! We are incredibly lucky at school to have some very talented parents amongst us, who are helping to plan and draw illustrations for the wall.


The children's voice...

Original ideas included:

"Bring the words of a book onto the wall!"

"Can we have a tree like nursery have?"

"Comfy and cosy, relaxed - not to be a rushed environment"

"Think about where the light comes from to be eco-friendly"

"Sunshine shapes around the lights"

"Hang features which reflect light"

"A rainbow wall"

"Can there be a tunnel?"

"Can there by fairytale books on the wall?"

"Can the whole class be in there?"

"Can we project images onto the ceiling?"

FEBUARY 2019...

Our journey to fill the new library space with exciting books has begun. Thank you to the wonderful amount raised at the Christmas Fair, we have been able to make our first exciting order of new books. They have been carefully chosen to nurture the children's current interests in all age groups and to support a diverse love of learning across all areas of the curriculum. The books that will remain in school for guided reads will challenge reading skills and comprehension. The books sent home are carefully chosen to improve each child's fluency and pace and widen their vocabulary.

Mrs Knowles, Literacy Lead talking all about the project...

"As some of you may already be are aware, the library project has been a venture that we have been working on since June of last year. With the school having been open since 2001, we felt that our library had become dated and uninspiring. Not only was the literature in there becoming more and more out-of-date, the learning environment didn’t capture our school’s love of learning and books. Over the past year, there has been a real drive to create a love of books and reading across the school and we felt that starting with a stimulating and exciting learning environment to foster the love of books was the best place to start.

I think we can all agree that reading is a vital skill that every child needs to develop and flourish as a learner.  Reading provides a crucial foundation for success in school and in life. As teachers, our job is to create opportunities where children are exposed to books throughout the day and what better way to do this than by creating a fantastic new library that creates awe and excitement. Here, the children will be given many opportunities to read a selection of books, sit and listen to books, take part in activities and lessons in a motivating and stimulating learning space.

I am excited to develop this real love of reading across the whole school and our new library will be at the heart of this. It will be a place where children are encouraged to discover, explore, question, and invent new ideas. This will enable them to become successful readers- as well as fostering their love of reading.

The thoughtful arrangement and woodland theme of our library gives this learning space an identity that helps children make connections between the books and their characters. This theme was inspired by our pupil voice, where the children fed back to the school council that they wanted the characters to come to life in their new library; they also requested tree and tree house for them to sit and read in- no pressure there Mrs Gordon!

We believe the experience of learning - whether formal or informal - should be an exciting one and our library reflects this. The library offers spaces for small groups to work, either at the computer desks, at the table or in a more relaxed manner in the treehouse or simply sat on a toadstool!  

I would also like to add here, that this is only the beginning of our reading adventure at Grappenhall Heys. In the summer term,children will be given the opportunity to take books home as well as learning in the library with their teacher or Teaching Assistant. Children will also begiven the opportunity to swap their books regularly to encourage reading for pleasure both at home and at school.


In addition to the opening of our new library, there are still many exciting elements that will further enhance this project. We have also invested a lot of money into our guided reading schemes throughout the school. In particular, we have bought fifteen new sets of books for nursery to use as part of their reading and to enhance their curriculum. Each book has a story sack including puppets and resources so that the children can immerse themselves in the story. This new scheme will be rolled out in September this year.


In addition to this, we have also invested a significant amount of money into updating the reading books that the children take home. This will allow children to read a wide range of books from a variety of authors that will match each child’s ability and in early reading help to promote fluency and pace.


We still have a long way to go and the next phase of this project is to introduce Junior Librarian - a web-based library management system accessed via a web browser where children can scan books in and out, as well as reserve and review books online. And we hope to raise £2500, in order to buy FIVE new computers for our computer desks in our library.


Miss Yau and I are looking into launching a new initiative called ‘Rocket Funding’, this enables anyone to donate from anywhere in the world.


We hope that our fantastic new learning space brings the 'wow' factor, banishing dull rows of shelves and desks and creates anew enthusiasm and passion for reading at Grappenhall Heys. Some of the children’s first reactions have been captured this morning and there has been areal buzz in school.


On a personal note, I would just like to say, this library project has been a real passion of mine. I would like to personally thank each and every one of you in this room for your time, support and advice, all of which have allowed this to project to be as successful as it has".