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Reading scores are rising, but not in the US

11 December 2017

There's bad news from the US, where reading scores are declining, just when they are making real improvements in many countries across the world.

Basic literacy is at an all-time high across the world and most countries have seen steadily rising reading achievements in the last decade, as is shown by the Progress in International Reading Literacy Study.  Read more

Should celebrities be signed up for children's books?

6 February 2017

It's been a lively week on the children's publishing and reading front, with an attack on the "joyless education" which is putting children off reading, an intervention from the Children's Laureate demonstrating that drawing and illustrating help children's literacy and authors complaining about celebrity signings for children's books.  Read more

Reading Stars

20 May 2013

A reading campaign based around Premier League footballers has been a resounding success, according to the report released today by the National Literacy TrustUK-based organisation which has campaigned since 1993 to improve literacy standards across all age groups. Excellent research information and details of the many initiatives the charity is currently involved in. It also has a useful page of news stories on UK literacy, which links to newsletter 'Reading Stars', with UK Premier League footballers such as Theo Walcott, is a huge success, inspiring more children to read and raising library attendance and literacy.  Read more

Breakthrough in libraries campaign

11 July 2011

It looks as if the campaign against closing libraries in the UK has just scored a significant victory. Since the Culture Minister Ed Vaizey, has failed to intervene to assert the statutory right to a library service, campaigners all over the country have rallied to challenge the closures being put in place by local authorities.  Read more

The struggle for literacy

7 March 2011

World Book Night was brilliant and World Book Day its usual effective self. But what about the literacy campaign which lies behind the whole operation?  Read more

English: the global language

20 December 2010

A wonderful free exhibition at the British Library, Evolving English, makes the point: 'the roots of old English, slang dictionaries, advertisements and newspapers from around the world are brought together to present a fascinating picture of the evolution of English'.  Read more

Books in the home key for children

14 June 2010

A major recent study led by Nevada University has showed that regular access to books in the home had a direct effect on children's long-term educational achievement. Involving 70,000 people in 27 countries, it showed that the effect of having 500 books in the home was to increase by three years the length of time that these children subsequently spent in education.  Read more

Launch of We give books

24 May 2010

The Penguin Group and the Pearson Foundation have launched an interesting new charitable venture, designed both to get children reading and to encourage them to become charitable givers. When a child reads a book online, they are able to donate another book to be sent to a reading charity and can choose from four options as to where their this book is sent.  Read more

Turning non-readers into readers

20 April 2009

Recent rather disturbing figures have revealed that there is a potential market of 20 million potential readers in the UK who do not read books. In the US a recent survey revealed that one in four Americans didn't read a single book last year. So who are these huge potential markets and can anything be done to activate them?   Read more

Libraries - the fight-back

23 March 2009

Our libraries seem to have been facing inexorable decline. In the boom times people switched from libraries and started buying their books in greater numbers. The free internet access libraries provided proved attractive, particularly to younger library visitors, but became less of a draw as home internet access has become the norm.   Read more

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