Ysgol Cystennin

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Patrons of Reading

We are proud to be Patrons of Reading at Ysgol Cystennin, a small primary school in Mochdre near Colwyn Bay in North Wales.

We were asked to become Patrons when we received this e mail from Chloe Edwards.

And after this approach, how could we say ‘no’?!

Hello Steve and Steve,

My name’s Chloe Edwards (as the e mail suggests!) and I teach at Cystennin Junior School in Mochdre, North Wales. It’s a wonderful friendly little school (well we think so!), in between Colwyn Bay and Llandudno Junction.

After hearing about the success of Ysgol Esgob Morgan’s patron of reading and how much it’s changed pupils’ attitudes to reading, we thought that it’s got to be something we try too.

We know we have not previously booked you to visit our school, and that we do currently have a ‘link’, however would really appreciate it if you’d consider helping us in our mission to get all our children loving books.

I’m sure you’ve received many requests and would need to have a chat first about how it would work.  So it’d be great if that would be possible!  We think your wit and fun approach is just what we need. My personal favourites are iHero; I loved a series of red books when I was a child in which you could the story and they’re great for using for children to write the next bit of the adventure!

I hope you saw my tweet!  It was my first go at using twitter (not bad for a girl from Crewe, hey Steve B?!) Hopefully you’ve received an email too from some of our children via our secretary (they’ve been having technical issues but wanted to contact you asap).


Yours hopefully,

Chloe Edwards


We are so glad we said YES!

The Patron of Reading scheme was conceived by Tim Redgrave, headteacher of Ysgol Esgob Morgan in North Wales.

A Patron of Reading is a school’s special, designated children’s author with whom the school forms a personal attachment. The author might be a writer of fiction, a writer of non-fiction, a poet, a storyteller or an illustrator. They work with the school to raise the profile of reading for pleasure with pupils, parents and staff.


What have we been doing?

We have visited Cystennin on several occasions, where we have been promoting the love of reading (after one of our visits one student who was a non-reader read 16 books in 7 weeks!).

We have set up a 2 Steves’ Reading Challenge that pupils take part in every year. We then have a big awards evening, which is becoming a bigger event every year!

Giving performances for students/staff parents and governors.

Organising a book quiz.

Answering e mails from students.

Looking at pupil’s work and offering advice.

Promoting the Libraries’ Summer Reading Challenge.

Giving writing masterclasses.

And lots more!!!

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The pupils are always very happy to see us and have produced fantastic work based on our books.

They read our books, share their work and have produced some board games based on our iHero and Action Dogs books…

The pupils have even set up a library for their parents – it’s called The 2 Steves’ Library!

The partnership is certainly working – in a recent Estyn Report (the Welsh equivalent of OFSTED) the school was praised for how well the pupils read…

Overall, most pupils read well and have a good understanding of texts. They use higher-order reading skills effectively in different subjects…”

Also the school was praised for their work with outside people…

“partnership working is a strong feature of the school’s work.”

…and that’s where we come in!

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