Penguin, in collaboration with The Runnymede Trust, has launched a new campaign called Lit in Colour to explore ways it can support schools with making the teaching and learning of English literature more inclusive. The project aims to help increase students' access to more books by writers of colour and those from minority ethnic backgrounds.
- Commission research from The Runnymede Trust to better understand the scale of the issue and the barriers and make practical recommendations for change. You can access a full description of the research.
- Offer long-term support for schools by providing tools, resources, training, book donations and author involvement to equip and empower teachers and students to make changes.
- Develop alliances with experts and organisations already fighting for education reform.
External Advisory Board
NAHT is a member of the Lit in Colour External Advisory Board, represented by NAHT's president Ruth Davies. The Board aims to provide insight, thoughts and experiences and to help shape the campaign proposals and work.
The Lit in Colour campaign has published new free teaching resources for a range of texts for KS3 to KS5, including resources on poetry, non-fiction and fiction for KS3, resources for KS4 that support student's exam practice and a KS5 resource for English Language that develops students critical thinking and discussion skills. All resources include an extract of the selected text, videos of the author reading the extract aloud and/or talking about the text, and interactive activities. They can be downloaded for free here.
Penguin Talks is a programme of free, creative talks for young people, giving them the opportunity to both hear from, and directly question, a world-renowned thinker, writer or influential figure from the Penguin family of authors. The aim of Penguin Talks is to help equip young people for the future by introducing a new generation of readers to new ideas and perspectives, and broadening their understanding of issues that speakers feel to be particularly prevalent for this generation. You can apply to host a talk in your own school , and the full library of previous talks is available to watch online.
There are a few places left on World of Stories, a programme to equip schools with the books, materials, training and resources they need to champion reading for pleasure across the whole school, and reinvigorate their school libraries and reading spaces. If your school is based in one of our target regions, you may be eligible to take part this year – find out more and express interest in applying.
A free webinar is being held on Wednesday 30 March to support primary and secondary teachers, and library staff, to further understand the different ways they can support readers when accessing problematic texts from their collections. Participants will explore a range of methods to promote anti-racism through a study of literature and contribute to a discussion about the role that schools and libraries can play in prompting meaningful conversations about race and prejudice – find out more and sign up.
You can also access the ‘Lit in Colour’ campaign’s list of ‘Best new children's books by Black authors and illustrators'.
As part of the campaign, Penguin is releasing a range of free resources for all age groups. These resources will be aimed both at the English literature and language curriculum, and also to support reading for pleasure and extracurricular activity.
You can sign up for the Lit in Colour newsletter. The newsletter will share news about the campaign as well as opportunities to access practical support from Penguin, including future book donations and free teaching resources, as well as opportunities to share your views.
First published 17 May 2021