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Go places with reading

National Literacy Trust and Oxford University Press launch UK-wide Reading Competition for Primary Schools

After research showed that 22% of children are not encouraged to read at home, the National Literacy Trust and Oxford University Press are launching an exciting competition to get families involved in their child’s reading. The Reading Miles Global Challenge is open now to all UK schools and will run to 16 March 2012.

Acknowledging that pupils reading outside of the classroom has been directly linked to higher achievement in school, the National Literacy Trust has gone even further by suggesting that reading any type of material outside of class just once a month is associated with higher reading levels.

The competition works by converting minutes spent reading into miles travelled around the world. Pupils will embark on a reading world tour by collecting points every time they read with their parents home, travelling 500 miles for every 10 minutes of reading. A free resource includes a printed wall map so that children can see where they’ve been and where they’re headed next. The resource also includes downloadable certificates and postcards to document the journey.

The competition has been designed to encourage communication between parents, pupils and teachers. Each time a pupil reaches one of the checkpoints, which have been outlined on the map to mark different intervals of reading, teachers can present them with a certificate to celebrate the milestone. They can also complete a postcard once they reach a checkpoint and give it to whoever has been reading with them; whether it’s a parent, carer, sibling, grandparent or a member of staff at school.

Every pupil who completes their reading journey around the world will be entered into a prize draw to win some fantastic prizes for themselves and their school. This includes an Oxford University Press big book package; £50 worth of books for the winning pupil; £500 worth of books for the school; and a day of storytelling from Snail Tales for the school of the winning pupil. The winning pupil will also be awarded a family ticket to their closest attraction, worth up to £75.

Jonathan Douglas, Director, National Literacy Trust said: “The support children receive at home is vital for their literacy development. Our recent research shows that a shocking 22% of children report that no one at home encourages them to read. That’s why we have teamed up with Oxford University Press to motivate parents and guardians to read with their child and maximise their potential outside of school.”

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Pie Corbett