National supermarket chain Morrisons, working in conjunction with the Reading for Pleasure project has launched a book donation and exchange station for children, in its stores across the UK. The Morrisons Children’s Little Library aims to promote reading and literacy in children, particularly those who come from disadvantaged backgrounds.
The National Literacy Trust recently reported that children who own books are six times more likely to read above the level expected for their age but that one in 11 disadvantaged children don’t own a single book.
Teresa Cremin, Professor of Education (Literacy) and Reading for Pleasure project lead, said:
“It’s been great working with Morrisons to help make the Little Library idea a reality. Research from the OU shows that reading books helps children to start conversations, spark imagination and support emotional wellbeing. Reading benefits children and young people in so many ways and is especially vital after such a difficult and disruptive year, as it creates a safe space to escape and learn.”
According to the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) Reading for Pleasure is the single most important indicator of a child’s future success. It is recognised that children who read for pleasure improve their life chances, not just in education, but in mental wellbeing and social relationships. The OU’s Reading for Pleasure project was established to enable practitioners to enrich their knowledge and practice, and schools to create cultures of reading and stronger links with parents and young readers, who benefit from being members of vibrant reading communities. To date, over 100 Teachers’ Reading Groups have been established, encouraging tens of thousands of primary school children to read for pleasure.
Morrisons’ Children’s Little Library exchanges were set up in stores across the UK in May 2021. Customers can bring along unwanted books to donate and all children, teenagers and parents can pick up a book for free. Books will also be donated through the initiative to local schools and community groups, via Morrisons Community Champions.
For more information, see the full story on OU News.