According to Alex Quigley, a reading expert and researcher, author of "Closing the Reading Gap", teaching Dickens and Shakespeare too early is a "wasteful of precious curriculum time." Studying complex literature too early is common in many schools, a method which should on the contrary be postponed as late as possible.

"There is lots of practice where teachers report doing GCSE texts and topics in KS3 just for familiarity – knowing full well it is probably too hard to understand fully at this stage," said Quigley. It seems that a cause of this is a lack of knowledge about "pre-complex alternatives."

US educator Doug Lemov, author of the book "Teach Like a Champion" recommends using age-appropriate readings to introduce young students to content of more difficult books that they will be able to understand much better later on.

Picture: The Fairy Tale, by Walther Firle (Wikimedia Commons, w/Effects)