How a simple game can get some unenthusiastic readers to engage more fully with what’s in a book.

There is a certain truth in the notion that in order to enjoy a novel one has to have a sense of imagination.  An imagination which turns the descriptions, conversations, and events into a new reality inside the reader’s head.

There is also a certain truth in the fact that television can reduce this sense of exploration of ideas while computer games reduce it still further until there is little imagination left.

At the same time texting reduces language to snippets to a degree that can make a work of fiction look like a visitor from another planet to some students.

One way to break through this barrage of anti-bookisity (apart from inventing new words like “bookisity”) is to ask students to open a book at random and find a few lines that intrigue them.

It makes an ideal game towards the end of term. They might come up with a famous quote to do with the best and worst of times, or they could find something seemingly mundane such as “Wait for the common sense of the morning*.”

And then the discussion: Is the morning a better time to consider problems? Is there such a thing as common sense?

From here the students can be taken anywhere in their reading, and the point is made that literature is a source of ideas in individual sentences as well as in the whole story.

Consider Wilkie Collins statement that we “see with nobody’s eyes, we hear with nobody’s ears, we feel with nobody’s hearts, but our own.”  One never quite knows where these explorations lead.

This adventure can be continued into the holidays if the students each have a classic novel to borrow from the school or department library.  “Choose one book, find ten quotes you want to share,” is the project for the summer.

To help in this venture, Wordsworth Editions has a very wide range of books from as little as £1.88 each (with no delivery charge and no minimum order) covering authors from William Blake to DH Lawrence, Wilkie Collins to Robert Louis Stevenson.

If you want to see our selection of 50 essential texts taken from our full range of 400 titles, please do click here.

We also have our offer of a free book just in case you have not come across Wordsworth Editions before.  To receive a free sample of one of our classics without any obligation please do email with your name and the school address, and we’ll put it in the post to you with our compliments.

What’s more, if you order anything from us now, we’ll get the books to you well before the end of term. We look forward to hearing from you.

*Taken from “The Time Machine” by HG Wells – one of the many books on our list.

To what extent do your pupils understand what is going on in the Middle East?

The average person knows very little of what is going on in the middle east, and perhaps more importantly, WHY – a result of the differing interpretations of historical and present-day events in the region. Not to mention it’s obvious complexity.

And, since your pupils have followed this timeline of events for a much shorter period of time, confusion and a lack of understanding about what is going on in the middle east is likely to be much greater. Which is why the charity, Middle East Education, was formed and are offering FREE talks that give a balanced yet factual look at the issues involved.

If you are interested in booking one of our FREE talks, simply email to register your interest and to organise a mutually convenient time for us to visit your school.

Given by two knowledgeable, articulate and lively speakers, one Muslim the other Christian or Jewish, the talks can be provided in accordance with the requests from individual schools and are accompanied by colourful PowerPoint presentations containing many maps and photos, films, and animations. What’s more, questions and discussion by your students is encouraged.

If you would like to find out more before registering your interest, simply visit On our website you will also find a number of free resources, including PowerPoints, activities and teachers’ notes, generally sorted by subject area (General Studies, History…) and/or education level (GCSE, A-Level…).


“Your presentation was extremely interesting – you managed to compress a huge amount of material into less than an hour without sacrificing its intelligibility, and our pupils were clearly engaged by what you had to say.”  – Ibstock Place School

“Our students found the talks beneficial, we wanted to cover the overview period with an emphasis on the present day and this was achieved. Having the aid of the ppt and Sami’s examples, gave our students further sources that they could use in their controlled assessment. We will be looking to have a talk next year subject to any review of our curriculum.” – Upton High

See more >>