It’s no surprise that here at Smiffys we love Book Day! Of course, we’re obsessed with any day dedicated to encouraging imagination and having fun in fancy dress! This year marks 25 years of Book Day so we want to help you make your celebrations the best yet with a few tips and some helpful information about the positive change the World Book Day charity can have on the lives of young people.
The goal of World Book Day this year is to see more children, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, form life-long habits of reading books for pleasure. Studies have revealed just how important this can be for young minds – from improved vocabulary and reading skills, better performance in a range of subjects at school and it has even been proved to improve a child’s empathy skills and their own mental wellbeing!
So just how can we get youngsters hooked back on the books? Well, we’ve listed a few things that can make a world of difference!
Bring Home the Books
First thing you need are books, but don’t worry because building up a collection of enjoyable reads for children at home can be done on any budget. School libraries are completely free for children to borrow a huge range of books from and charity shops are also a great way to pick up some books for a low price. Finally, make sure you utilise the free £1 book tokens provided by National Book Tokens every World Book Day – each year a new range of 12 free books are released, designed to have something for everyone. You can see this year’s range here.
Reading To Them Regularly
Time is precious and it can feel like we never have enough of it but if you would support your child in other hobbies, like driving them to after school activities, could you also spare some time to help encourage reading at home? Spending time reading to children could be a perfect excuse to wind down after tea-time or before bed and will help encourage the habit of reading for pleasure.
Share The Love With Book Recommendations
Could you start having conversations with your child about the books they have read and ask them what they thought? Can they think of a friend that might also like it? Or do you even have any recommendations for their next read? World Book Day sources state that having trusted adults and friends who can share book recommendations, play an important part in the development of habitual reading for pleasure.
Make It Fun
Some children are natural born readers but unless your child is Matilda, they may need some encouragement to sit down and get lost in a book. The way reading is approached can make a huge difference in how a child perceives the activity. Firstly, children should be supported in finding their favourites, it’s obvious they’ll prefer certain genres over others and supporting their choices can help them find their favourites quicker which makes reading way more enjoyable! Creating a cosy place in a quiet area where your child can spend time reading can make the activity feel more special, which might make starting out a little easier for any of those reluctant book worms at first!
The official World Book Day website has loads more information, as well as some fun activities and resources that you can access here and of course, Smiffys are here to help you dress up as your favourite book character with this wonderful collection of World Book Day Costumes ready to help you out!