"I can’t recommend the services of Victoria enough – she made it her mission to convert the reluctant reader, while at the same time, exposed our avid readers to different genres and authors that they might not otherwise have come across. Victoria promoted the importance of reading through pupil competitions, talks by authors, as well as her own enthusiasm"
"Victoria was the inspiration and driving force behind the creation of our school library. Our Library was dull, poorly stocked and unused by staff or children. Victoria came in and completely redesigned the library, found the funding for new shelves and books to completely restock. She worked ceaselessly and in a shorter time than expected we had a warm and vibrant library filled with books to children love right in the heart of the school. Victoria has a genuine passion for getting children to read and they respond to her with enthusiasm. She is an inspiring person to work with who helps you to go beyond expectations and create a really great library. There is no one I would trust more to get every child reading for life."
"The Book Activist began working with us just over a year ago to help improve the quality and provision of our school library. The library was functioning, but was far from an inviting space which promoted a love of books and reading - with Victoria's expert guidance, we created an action plan and soon got to work culling the out of date, unappealing and tatty book stock. Following building work our library was relocated. Victoria was on hand to help us make the best use of the new space considering the layout of shelving, positioning of the different book categories and ensuring there was ample front facing display shelving. She happily got stuck in to re-shelving the books and advising us on areas in which we have less suitable reading materials. She has supported us in instigating a much better purchasing strategy so we are not only able to support the children’s learning more effectively, but also provide age appropriate, high interest reading materials to suit all of our readers! We are also about to start our ‘Book Box’ scheme following her suggestion to get the children in and choosing books regularly. Victoria is very knowledgeable, has loads of great ideas to help encourage reading and we would not hesitate to recommend The Book Activist to help you to create a child centred, inviting and engaging reading space to help promote reading for pleasure!"
"Victoria is an inspirational leader, able to motivate and enthuse teachers and students with her genuine passion for reading and literacy. In the time I worked alongside her, I learnt a great deal and I was particularly impressed by how open to innovative ideas Victoria was. Her positive attitude and indefatigable energy were the driving force behind many excellent developments in reading at our school. Whilst having a sensitive emotional intelligence enabling her to form productive working relationships, she also has exacting personal standards. She seeks excellence in what she does and she does demand this from others"
"Victoria has an infectious love of reading and has inspired so many children over the years I have known her and worked alongside her. I have worked with several school librarians, but Victoria is quite unique in her ability to relate to children of all ages, recognise their abilities, qualities and taste and guide their book choices, either to 'switch them on' to reading or maintain and further their love of books. She has a wealth of knowledge about children's literature of all genres and a similar wealth of ideas when it comes to engaging children with books and making reading fun.
I cannot recommend Victoria enough if you are looking for someone to guide your child along their reading journey, or if you want someone to inspire the children in your school with her passion for books and her natural warmth, enthusiasm and ability to engage young people."
Kirstie Negus, English Teacher, English Matters
"Victoria is an inspirational leader, able to motivate & enthuse teachers and students with her genuine passion for reading and literacy."
Liz Cousins, Literacy Co-ordinator, Warden Park Primary Academy
Hilary Nawrocka, Head of Pre-Prep, Ardingly College
John Tarrant, Lead Practitioner English,
Warden Park Secondary Academy
Chris Calvey, Prep School Head,
The views expressed in these testimonials are those of the inidviduals concerned.
"Victoria, The Book Activist, is a smart, thoughtful and very approachable advocate of children's reading. She did a bookchat with my daughter aged 9, and it has truly transformed her appetite for reading, and her reading habits. Victoria spent an hour teasing out Lara's reading habits, likes and dislikes both in terms of books and more generally, and encouraged Lara to explore her marvellous travelling bookcase - fiction and non fiction of many different genres. Lara loved the personalised approach and thoroughly enjoyed Victoria's various tactics to encourage and broaden her reading. She was immediately enthused, and started reading that very evening.
Further to the chat, Victoria sent us a wide-ranging list of reading suggestions, all of which she felt would appeal to Lara. So far, so good! She also provided a number of links to children's books websites, with a particularly popular option that allows children to interact with some of their favourite authors. I would ( and already have) recommend Victoria's well thought-out, holistic and very friendly service to anyone whose child is able but not immediately willing to read. She does it all in a professional but very engaging and fun manner!"
Mrs Nolan, on Bookchat with Lara, aged 9.
"Thank you so much for spending time with Harriet for a bookchat. Harriet absolutely loved it. The idea that she could talk to someone about how much she loves reading and who could guide us when it comes to widening the range of genre she reads, was appealing to both Harriet and myself as her Mum. There is such a lot of choice on the market that it's great to have some guidance in choosing appropriate and challenging reads for someone her age. You made her feel very at ease to talk about her reading and Harriet particularly liked the travelling bookcase.
The reading suggestions you sent us after the bookchat were comprehensive and beautifully laid out and we can't wait to start choosing some exciting new books from it for Harriet to read. Thanks again for your time spent with us."
Mrs Curtis on Bookchat with Harriet, age 11.
"My son loved the one to one attention during bookchat & truly benefitted from your knowledge. You have reignited his love for reading.”
"The children loved the workshop, they are now so much more motivated to read and explore books - children that used to say that they didn't like reading are now asking to go to the library so that is great! Also, when I ask them to find book to do some quiet reading I am now met with smiling faces! The activities that you led were engaging and really encouraged the children to think about reading and what it means to them without being too intense! The workshop has had an extremely positive impact."
Year 6 Teacher, Warden Park Primary Academy