Rising number of children reading for fun, National Literacy Trust survey finds

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30th June 2015 14:24 - Education

An annual survey, commissioned by The National Literacy Trust, has revealed that a rising number of children are reading for fun, with a Rising number of children reading for fun, National Literacy Trust survey findsnotable increase in the number of children reading daily.

The survey revealed that the enjoyment and frequency of children reading outside of the classroom is at its highest level for nine years.

The survey found that 54.4 per cent of the children surveyed enjoy reading either ‘very much’ or ‘quite a lot’. A further 35.5 per cent said that they only enjoyed reading a little bit. Only 10 per cent of the children said that they do not enjoy reading at all.

The figure of children who read frequently have increased noticeably, according to the survey, with a 28.6 per cent increase in the number of children who read every day, outside of the classroom. The figure rose from 32.2 per cent in 2013, to 41.1 per cent in 2014.

Recently, a number of major campaigns have been set up to encourage children to spend more time reading. These campaigns include:

Bookstart, the Summer Reading Challenge, the Young Readers Programme and National Literacy Trust Hubs.

It has been found that reading outside of school can have a positive effect on a child’s school grades, with children who read for pleasure being five times more likely to have an above average reading age, as opposed to those who do not read.

The survey discovered that there is a prevailing gap in the frequency of reading between genders, with approximately half (46.5 per cent) of girls claiming to read outside of school every day. Just 35.8 per cent of boys said the same.

As well as this, a higher figure of girls (61.6 per cent) read for pleasure ‘very much’ or ‘a lot’, as opposed to just 47.2 per cent of the boys surveyed.

The survey also indicated that there was a lack of interest amongst parents when it came to their child’s reading, with 1 in 4 (24.3 per cent) children agreeing with the statement "my parents don't care if I spend any time reading".  

Of the children on free school meals, 31.5 per cent agreed with the statement, as opposed to 23 per cent of children not on free school meals.

Jonathan Douglas, Director of the National Literacy Trust, said of the survey:

"More must be done to help parents realise what a difference reading with their children from a young age can make to their future. Initiatives including Read On. Get On and our Words for Life campaign are raising awareness and helping parents understand their role in supporting their child’s literacy."

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