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Encouraging a love of books

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June 13, 2018

Time for some new books: Ali Mohd Zaki and Akirah-Lee Johnstone from Cobram Primary School.

Every prep student in Victorian government schools will receive free books as part of a plan to lift literacy and numeracy outcomes.

From next year, prep bags given to students starting at a government school will include a range of expert-selected books and a copy of a new literacy and numeracy booklet for parents.

The first phase of the strategy included an online literacy teaching toolkit for primary schools.

As part of the second phase, this will be expanded to support teachers at secondary schools.

The toolkit provides practical advice and guidance, instructional videos and easy-to-use lesson plans to support teachers to implement the curriculum.

A new mathematics teaching toolkit will also be available later this year, giving teachers high-quality and evidence-based tools to boost student numeracy skills.

There will also be new advice for educators to assess students’ progress, including a digital assessment library which provides real-time feedback on the areas students are excelling and where they need more help.

Teachers will also have access to new resources to help them identify, understand and meet the literacy and numeracy learning needs of students with learning difficulties, as well as koorie students.

Every Victorian public school will also have access to expert-led workshops in literacy and numeracy, helping them develop innovative and engaging ways of teaching students these vital skills.

Cobram Primary School principal Matt Knight said the changes were some of the most significant he had seen as an educator.

‘‘The professional learning our teachers have been provided is a huge step forward,’’ he said.

‘‘Any time books are getting into the hands of children is a great thing. We’ve been doing a lot of work to get quality text to our students and this is a great way of doing it.

‘‘The toolkits we have been given provide great evidence-based teaching and learning strategies. The opportunity for upskilling is a real bonus.’’

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