Spacehoppers readers and ebooks case study from Brickhouse Primary School

Mad Men of Mars Series CoversBrickhouse Primary school have been using Space Hoppers readers and ebooks with their Year 5 children intervention group who are working slightly below expectations for reading. Helen Debney the Deputy Headteacher tells us how Space Hoppers have helped to improve their results.

About Brickhouse Primary School:

Brickhouse is a primary school in Sandwell, educating a large number of disadvantaged children.  We have approximately 200 children on roll (Nursery to Year 6).

The children using Spacehopper readers are year 5 children who are working slightly below expected but are not special needs.

Your role:

Deputy Headteacher and leader of English, Curriculum, Attendance and Behaviour.

Tell us about the children in the reading intervention group

There are 5 year 5 children in the group, 3 girls and 2 boys. Progress has been slow especially for the boys, who are not inspired by reading and needed texts they want to read.

How did you use the books?

The children are taken in 2s or 3s with an intervention member of staff where they have a copy of the book each to read and discuss. This happens two or three times a week.

What are the benefits of using Space Hoppers?

The children are really enjoying the Space Hoppers series so far. The boys in particular are enjoying the books and are enthused to attend the intervention sessions. As the content is “different” to other texts they are offered at times they are keen to read.

Do children like reading print books or would they prefer to read on a laptop or ipad?

The children enjoy the printed formats as they have one each and because the texts are currently new they enjoy that they are the first to read them.

They enjoy using ebooks in class at times although due to limited IT in school this is not as often as would be liked. Later in the trial we were able to access the eversion of the text. Two boys using this in place of the text said “It’s better to read it on the computer, it’s more modern than a book” whilst a girl stated “I like the computer, but the books are nicer to hold because they are new and nobody else read them yet”.

Does the Space Hoppers series appeal to both girls and boys?

It seems to appeal more to the boys who are very keen to read them, it is good to find a series they are inspired by.

Have the Teacher’s Resources included with Space Hoppers helped you to run the intervention session?

Intervention staff are running the sessions and they are using the teacher’s book to support delivery. They are finding the teacher’s book useful and were happy to see how the series motivated the children.

What did the children think of Space Hoppers and did they enjoy reading the books?

The Space Hoppers series engaged the children. It very much motivated the boys in particular. As boys attainment and progress is an issue across school this is a positive from our point of view. The children enjoyed how the series works and were keen to be involved in reading and discussion.

The boys enthused when asked what they thought of the books, using phrases such as “the stories are amazing”, “these books are awesome and interesting to read” and “it is unbelievable how exciting the books are”. I have rarely heard these boys on the intervention so keen to read books!

How effective do you think Space Hoppers has been in raising reading attainment in this intervention group?

The reading age change is not only as a result of the intervention as we have put many other strategies and interventions in place, but they have contributed as the children enjoyed their intervention time and the books used.


Start reading age

End reading age


Child A (male)




Child B (male)




Child C (female)




Child D (female)




Child E (female)





Would you recommend Space Hoppers to other schools?

Yes, definitely.

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Or find out more information about Space Hoppers:


Assessment, English and Literacy, Grammar, Spelling and Punctuation, Languages, More able, Reading and Ebooks, Space Hoppers

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