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Primary schoolchildren's reading enjoyment hits record high

02/06/2017 Joanna

The number of primary school-age children who actively enjoy reading has hit a record high, according to a new report.

Figures from the National Literacy Trust have indicated that 77.6 per cent of primary school children say they enjoy reading, which marks the highest levels ever recorded by the charity. The research also highlighted the link between enjoyment of reading and educational outcomes, suggesting that prolonged enjoyment of reading can lead to sustained benefits in the classroom.

For example, ten-year-olds who enjoy reading were generally shown to have a reading age that was 1.3 years higher than peers who did not enjoy reading, but this rose to 2.1 years for 12-year-olds and 3.3 years for 14-year-olds.

The study was published to mark the 20th anniversary of the National Literacy Trust's Young Readers Programme, a national school-based reading initiative that has seen more than 1.1 million books provided to 384,196 disadvantaged primary schoolchildren over two decades.

Favourite books selected by those involved in the Young Readers Programme included Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, The Boy in the Dress and How to Train Your Dragon. After taking part in the scheme, reading enjoyment levels rose for 93 per cent of pupils, while reading attainment levels increased in 92 per cent of book recipients.

Jonathan Douglas, director of the National Literacy Trust, said: "We are thrilled that our research has found children's enjoyment of reading to be at an all-time high. When children enjoy reading and have books of their own, they do better at school and later in life, so we must continue to do everything we can to inspire children to fall in love with reading for a lifetime."

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