Once we've received your completed volunteer application, you will get an email from our admin team (who you can meet here) inviting you to watch our introductory video and to then complete a short quiz - both are designed to help you understand in more detail what the role involves and whether it is right for you.

When you let us know that you'd like to proceed, we'll send you more information and the means to book yourself onto our initial training - or ring you if you've told us that you still have questions.

Our training is fun, interactive and enjoyable…. it will give you a really clear understanding of the role, and plenty of chance to practice the key skills required, so that you, and we, can be confident you will thrive as a volunteer with us.

Our experienced, professional trainers (who you can meet here) will take each group through your first two sessions, both about 50 minutes long, (with a short break between!) looking at how to build a positive learning relationship with children and how to “chat” about books in a purposeful and effective way.

After you’ve completed these first trainer-led sessions we’ll send you a short ‘myth-busting’ video to watch before you attend the next pair of online group training modules. The film is designed to reinforce the group sessions by specifically helping you to recognise and avoid some of the counter-productive ideas we’ve all inherited about ‘how you help children with reading’!

You're then able to join a further two trainer-led group sessions – again about 50 minutes long with a short break between. The first looks at how to read effectively to and with children of all ages, as well as how best to support them as they read to you. The second looks at how to ‘think outside the book’ to get and keep children engaged in and increasingly enthusiastic about books and reading.

When you’ve completed this second pair of online training sessions, we’ll send you our post-training reference information and an interactive quiz which is designed to help you reflect on and ‘embed’ what you’ve learned.

As soon as you return your quiz, we’ll send you a further film exploring the ‘good, better and best’ answers!

You will then be invited to join a final group session online, this time facilitated by one of our Support Representatives (who you can meet here). This is designed to answer any and all questions you might have about the practicalities of the role and ‘what happens next’.

After completing our DBS and other safeguarding checks, you will then be introduced ‘virtually’ to your school… and by them to the children you will be supporting. 

And before you know it, you have become a reading helper!

Coram Beanstalk's training has been a great ice-breaker for me as a first time reading helper. It has given me an excellent starting point and confidence to begin working with children and sharing the joy of books. New volunteer, Sept 2020

If you’d like to know more about how we support our reading helpers before you apply, you can find out here.

Meet our training team

Meet our support representatives

Apply to volunteer now