A good read?

Meteorologically Spring has sprung, although it really doesn’t feel like it.

And another World Book Day has come and gone. Depending upon the stage and age of your child this day has a differing resonance. That said, parents of younger children, will face World Book Day from a challenging perspective. On this day we have the personal challenges in making sure that our child had a decent fancy dress to wear on the day. So much pressure! When my lads were small, we found it very difficult to find things that looked decent and that they would wear. Some parents are more imaginative than others. Some children are more creative and accepting. My family and I were (are) less imaginative, less creative and less likely to want to be on show. I don’t miss those parental pressures.

And so, a massive thank you to all those who embraced World Book Day; especially those who were creative, imaginative and confident enough to dress up themselves.

There’s been loads of images (online) of children and adults dressed up for World Book Day; which is fantastic! My favourite was the little lad from Surrey, who dressed as Prince Harry. And a well-drawn (not grown) beard it was!

The thing about World Book Day is that we know we must not just focus on reading and literacy one day a year, but we’d more likely want to make it a marker post on a long journey in encouraging reading, encouraging a love of reading and we’ll then see those consequential improvements in literacy. There are very few things which all of us can agree on educationally. However, the ability to read and a development in the enjoyment of reading should be at the top of almost everybody’s long list of priorities. And rightly so!

Our challenge is to make sure that our children and young people are equipped with the skills to be able to read and for them to be exposed to such a range of written word that they can find something which for them is thoroughly enjoyable. That must go beyond just reading words of a badly crafted text or WhatsApp message, on a mobile phone screen.

On the whole, I do think the overwhelming majority of children, of people, really do enjoy reading and partly that’s because of the fantastic and positive role models they have/had in their school and/or the college. We cannot take on all of society’s challenges, but we will continue to encourage a love of literature for and with the children and young people in this community.

‘Reading should not be presented to children as a chore, a duty. It should be offered as a gift’. Kate DiCamillo

‘Reading is an exercise in empathy; an exercise in walking in someone else’s shoes for a while’. 
Malorie Blackman