Friday, February 22, 2013

Only one in eight dads take the lead with reading to their children

*** HRH, The Duchess of Cornwall and bestselling author, James Patterson, mark launch of campaign with visit to dads’ reading group in the Royal Borough of Greenwich

*** UK’s leading reading charity Booktrust launches the ‘Get Dads Reading’ campaign and challenges dads to match mums in reading with their children

UK dads trail far behind their partners when it comes to reading to their children. A new poll, carried out for Booktrust by Opinium, reveals that just 13% are the main reader with their child, with a quarter of fathers saying that the demand for them to work late means that they do not have time to read together more often.

Booktrust is calling on dads up and down the country to match mums’ efforts in reading with their children. To launch the campaign Booktrust’s patron, HRH, The Duchess of Cornwall and bestselling author James Patterson – 2010 Children’s Choice Book Award Author of the Year and founding partner of the Booktrust’s Children’s Reading Fund in association which his publisher Random House – will this afternoon visit a thriving dads reading group to see how dads and their children benefit from sharing books. At the moment, research shows that at formal literacy events for children, only 10% of the parents attending are dads.

James Patterson – who started writing for children in 2005 in order to encourage his son to read and has developed his own website, ReadKiddoRead, to help dads find books to read with their children – adds:

‘If we can get children reading and enjoying books, we open up a whole world of possibility to them. I believe that dads have a huge role to play in encouraging their children to read.  We need to give fathers the support they need in reading to their children. If I can help dads to understand their role in making books and reading more important in children’s lives, I’ll be a happy man’

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