Puffin is excited to give 80 more primary schools across Essex, South London, Middlesbrough and Tyne & Wear the chance to take part in Puffin World of Stories from September 2019. Schools must register their interest here by Friday 17 May 2019.
School libraries and reading spaces play a vital role in helping pupils develop an enjoyment of reading, but in the UK, school libraries aren’t statutory and there are no accurate records of how many there are, or if they are staffed or funded.
Reading for enjoyment is vital to academic success and positive mental wellbeing. According to research from the National Literacy Trust, 10-year-olds who enjoy reading have a reading age 1.3 years higher than their peers who do not enjoy reading, rising to 3.3 years by the age of 14, while children who enjoy reading are more likely to have higher levels of mental wellbeing than their peers.
In 2018, Puffin and the National Literacy Trust launched Puffin World of Stories; a pilot programme which aimed to help 50 primary schools reinvigorate their school libraries and champion reading for pleasure. Each participating school received boxes of brand new books, resources and colourful materials to breathe new life into their existing libraries and reading spaces and turn them into hubs of creativity and imagination. Teachers and librarians also attended specialist training, designed to help them bring the magic of reading to life amongst pupils, and received National Literacy Trust membership.
Of those schools already taking part, 100% of those running the library have said they feel better equipped to develop a reading community upon completing the training. The same proportion also felt they were better informed about how to about how to engage with pupils to inspire reading for pleasure.
Puffin World of Stories is part of Penguin Random House’s commitment to help close the creativity gap, which is rooted in inequality in the UK and means not everyone in society has an equal opportunity to meet their creative potential.
One of the teachers at a school already taking part in Puffin World of Stories said: “This week we have received our books and all we can say is WOW! What a tremendous donation. We are thrilled and excited. Thank you so very, very much on behalf of the staff and pupils. We are busy stamping and distributing them and can't wait to get reading!”