Year 4 2021

Welcome to the 2021 Reading Gladiators™ challenges. Let the reading begin!


  • Submission by Bridge Learning Campus

    Chalk Eagle
    (The link will direct you to the video)
    Year 4 really enjoyed the book.
    Freedom, protection, childhood innocence were some of the themes discussed within the sessions.
    Year 4 especially loved being creative to write their own narrative to the story. Seeing the children explore the depths of emotion and vulnerability in their writing was a very proud teaching experience.

    Thank you for Chalk Eagle, it was much loved

    Download the file


    Caroline Bradley
    Caroline Bradley 6th Apr 2021, 10:14am
    This put a HUGE smile on my face. What fantastic work! A heart warming interpretation of this wordless text. It was delivered so well and I felt such a connection - hearing the individual voices of your group.
  • Submission by Heathrow Primary School

    Runaway Robot Heathrow Primary

    This half term, Heathrow Primary Gladiators have enjoyed the buzz of their first book, 'The Runaway Robot' by Frank Cottrell-Boyce. The story is about a boy called Alfie who goes to the Airport Lost Property, where he finds a 100 year old robot, Eric. Eric has lost his leg and Alfie has lost his artificial hand. They form a strong friendship and help to put each other back together. Along the way, they meet lots of robots and other children trying to adapt to losing a limb.

    This story is full of heart, humour, acceptance, difference and bravery. The Gladiators have also thoroughly enjoyed learning about the evolution of robots over the decade, and we look forward to exploring other heavy weight titles in the Summer term. Stay tuned for more!​

    Download the file

  • Submission by Heathrow Primary School

    Heathrow Primary School – Runaway Robot Project

    The children have had a blast researching robots through the decades. The Runaway Robot was an inspirational and heartwarming read, which has motivated the children to explore similar titles. We look forward to 'The Umbrella Mouse' next half term!

    Download the file


    Caroline Bradley
    Caroline Bradley 6th Apr 2021, 9:59am
    A very striking display with a lot of information to pique the interest of passers by. I hope more children will want to read Runaway Robot after seeing your display.
    Komala Nayager 6th Apr 2021, 8:17pm
    Thank you:)
  • Submission by Knockhall Primary School

    Knockhall Primary Runaway Robot

    Download the file


    Caroline Bradley
    Caroline Bradley 6th Apr 2021, 9:47am
    It looks like Runaway Robot has given your Gladiators a keen interest in robots! Well done for working independently on this book during Lockdown!
  • Submission by St Frideswide C E Primary School

    Chalk Eagle/ Robot Boy

    We have been enjoying these books online and in school.

    Download the file


    Caroline Bradley
    Caroline Bradley 6th Apr 2021, 9:37am
    Thank you for sharing your work with us. Some thoughtful responses and it is great to see the recommended reading titles featuring in your display too. I hope you have inspired other children to pick up these books.
  • Week 1: Chalk Eagle

    Illustrations on their own can be powerful in telling a story. The Year 4 team explored this concept before looking at ‘Chalk Eagle’. They were given pictures from Tom Percival’s book ‘The Sea Saw’ and retold the story in their own words. They weren’t even given a title or a list of the characters’ names. So what you see here is their own tale, which they came up from looking at the Illustrations alone. I was amazed by their team effort as well as their choice of vocabulary. I hope this session has helped them with coming up with their retelling of ‘Chalk Eagle’, and I’m looking forward to seeing what they come up with 🙂

  • Week 5: Runaway Robot

    For the mini challenge, the Year 4 children each chose a robot to research and created fact files about them at home, following in Alfie’s footsteps. They were surprised to find that there was an actual robot called Eric, possibly the inspiration for our book. These fact files will later form a display about robots for everyone in the school to see. During our last session of ‘Runaway Robot’, the children wrote short stories using an illustration by Chris Riddell as a prompt. The Year 4 team have worked really hard this term and to see their enthusiasm for this great book blossom has been wonderful.

  • Week 4: Runaway Robot

    The Year 4 team explored the world of phrases and idioms with the help of the game show Catchphrase, and its very own robot, Mr Chips. After looking at some phrases, we discussed other sayings and thought of how Eric would respond to them (as he took some of the sayings literally). Then, the children created their own catchphrases with Eric acting them out. The drawings shown here are absolutely brilliant! Have a go yourself, and ‘say what you see’ 😉

  • Week 3: Runaway Robot

    In the lead up to our first session together at Knockhall, the Year 4 team had a go at writing short stories about their robots, taking inspiration from ‘Step 3’. Some of the stories were brilliant to read , including the tale of Metal Mike and his origins. In the session itself, the children acted out part of ‘Step 9’ using a script to help them. Their performance was awesome, as were their drawings that they created based on the chapter (which was done as their weekly challenge).

  • Week 2: Runaway Robot

    In the lead up to our virtual session (hosted during the third lock down), the Year 4 Reading Gladiators were asked to design their own robots with annotations around their drawings. Then, during the session itself, we showcased our robots to each other and talked about what they could do. Afterwards, we talked about ‘Step 3’ in greater depth and discussed Alfie’s feelings throughout the chapter.

  • Week 1: Runaway Robot

    Before reading their first book of their Reading Gladiators journey, the Year 4 team at Knockhall wrote their predictions about what they thought could happen in the story. They also wrote what they knew about robots already, creating picture boards showing different robots in the process.

  • Welcome to The 2021 Reading Gladiators Challenge

    We are so excited to finally launch Reading Gladiators 2020/2021. With new books and a new look on the website, you should be fully equipped to start your Reading Gladiators group in January. Your login will give you access to the guides. All the details you need are in the Running Your Reading Gladiators Group guide, including the mini-challenge dates for each title. We hope you enjoy the first title The Runaway Robot and we look forward to meeting your groups online next term. In the meantime we wish you a happy and restful Christmas break.