Summer Read


Paxman Academy Summer Read – The Boy at the Back of the Class


Each year we give our new Year 6 students a gift of a book. This is because reading is a gift. 


Young people who read well, achieve more and are able to engage with the world around them in a more meaningful way. This is not just about exam results – they can also use their reading skills to ensure that they are not misled by things they read or confused by challenging vocabulary. Being a reader is also good for wellbeing – meeting a character who is like you, or losing yourself in a fantasy world can be very liberating.


Summer Read Review Postcards


Every student has received a book review postcard – we would like every student to hand in their book 

review postcard to their form tutor in September. They can choose any form of response to the book: a 

formal review, a drawing or a poem. Or maybe a diary entry as their favourite character? All students 

who submit their card will receive an ASPIRE point and an entry into our Summer Read Prize Draw. We 

will also award certificates and prizes to the best examples.


In addition to this challenge, there are some additional activities and suggestions to develop knowledge 

of the text  below. Again, please  hand in any additional work completed to form tutors for additional 

ASPIRE points!


Researching the context of the book

Create a fact file about Syria on one side of A4. What information can you find out about the country:

  • Location
  • History
  • Culture
  • Conflict
Researching the context of the book

Ahmet is a refugee. Create a poster informing students your age about refugees and why people might be forced to become refugees. Include:

  • A definition of the word refugee
  • The reasons why people might need to seek refuge in another country
  • How we support refugees in the UK
Vocabulary Map

Create a mind map of a minimum of 10 words which are new to you. 

From each word, add a definition. Research the word with an online dictionary if you need to.

Extend your map further by applying each word in a new sentence of your own.

Creative response

Write a text in role as your favourite character from the novel. This might be a diary entry or a letter.

Explore their feelings, think about their response to key events in the text, and perhaps express thoughts or ideas they have that are not in the text.

Mood Board

Create a collage of images that link to themes and ideas in the novel.

Alternative Design

If you had the chance to redesign the book cover, how would you do it?

Think about:

  • Main image
  • Text style
  • Colours
Prefer to listen along to the text?
The good news is the whole text is read aloud on the YouTube videos below. Also, while reading yourself improves word recognition and speed, listening to a text can still improve your vocabulary and comprehension skills!