Institute of Education


New book edition helps teachers provide effective guided reading

30 June 2021

A new edition of a book aimed at helping teachers to teach effective guided reading lessons for children aged 4-7 has been published.

Male primary school teacher with two pupils reading pupils' work

‘Which Book and Why’ by UCL Institute of Education (IOE) academics Dr Sue Bodman and Glen Franklin helps teachers to choose the right book at the right time for young children learning to read, based on focused assessments. Which Book and Why also explains how guided reading fits with current theories of how children learn. The book outlines how practice needs to vary depending on the choice of text, teaching objectives and the needs of the child.

The new edition provides updated content and also includes a brand-new section that explores how to provide the rest of the class with meaningful literacy activities while the teacher is focusing on a particular guided reading group.

Each of the book’s three parts offer professional development and self-study activities for teachers, including student teachers, newly qualified teachers, and staff new to guided reading. There are also resources for literacy subject coordinators as well as senior management and leadership teams to support the implementation of high-quality and effective guided reading lessons.

Glen Franklin said “We want all children to love reading. Our hope is that Which Book and Why can demonstrate how, through effective guided reading, we can make this happen.”

Sue Bodman added: “We want teachers to enjoy teaching reading. Another of our goals is to help demystify the part that guided reading plays in a reading curriculum so that teachers feel more confident about the decisions they make.”

Dr Sue Bodman and Glen Franklin are Reading Recovery National Leaders at the European Centre for Reading Recovery based at the IOE. Reading Recovery is a literacy programme designed for the lowest achieving children aged around six that enables them to reach age-expected levels within 20 weeks.

The new edition of Which Book and Why was published on 3 June 2021 by Scholastic.



Image: Phil Meech for UCL Institute of Education.