Pearson UK Launches Enjoy Reading Campaign

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Pearson UK Launches Enjoy Reading Campaign

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Pearson launches #EnjoyReading campaign in the UK @Pearson_UK @pearsonplc
Friday, October 19, 2012 - 8:00am

CAMPAIGN: We Give Books Global

CONTENT: Press Release

October, 19, 2012 /3BL Media/ - Children’s attention spans are shorter, and demands on their attention are much greater than ever before, a new report from Pearson has revealed. In response, our UK education business has launched a new campaign to highlight the issue and provide more support for parents and teachers to help children develop a love of reading. 

More than 7 out of 10 UK teachers (77%) say that children’s attention spans are shorter than ever before in the classroom on starting secondary school. Ninety-seven per cent of UK teachers said parents could do more to encourage reading for pleasure at home.

We asked 400 English teachers1 and 2000 parents2 of preschool and primary aged children from across the UK about their children’s reading habits, and found that:

  • Children are spending three times as much of their time on ‘onscreen’ activity at home as they are on reading traditional books, according to parents. Children are watching TV for 90 minutes per day, playing computers for 42 minutes and going online for 28 minutes, compared to 44 minutes a day reading.
  • A fifth of parents waited until their child was two years old or older before reading their first book to them.
  • More than 1 in 10 parents said they read with their children less than once every six months or never.
  • More than one in six admits that they never read a bedtime story to their children.
  • Nearly half (49%) of parents in the UK were reading to their child every day, but thirty per cent admitted that they only read with their child once a week or less.
  • Nearly all teachers (94%) said that children don’t spend enough time reading for pleasure outside of the classroom and that children prefer spending time online rather than reading traditional books. 
  • 84% of teachers say that they need tools to help encourage reading online.

Our national ‘Enjoy Reading’ campaign is designed to inspire more children to develop an early lifelong love of reading, taking advantage of children’s interest in being online. The Enjoy Reading campaign continues our commitment to encouraging early literacy with the national free books programme Booktime and our partnership with the Pearson Foundation on the Read for my School competition. A new national reading competition for schools, a new Enjoy Reading hub for parents, thousands of free books for children and innovative new ways to inspire more children to read for pleasure both on- and offline are all ways in which the campaign will help more children love reading.

Backed by broadcaster Mariella Frostrup, the Enjoy Reading campaign sees Pearson working with a range of authors and partners on a wide-ranging action plan designed to get more children enjoying reading at home, as well as in the classroom.

Mariella Frostrup said:

“It’s vital that we as parents take every step we can to ensure that our children develop a love of reading from an early age. As a parent, I know how difficult it can be when there are so many different demands on a child’s attention. Putting great books in the formats that children enjoy and helping parents and teachers find new ways to inspire a love of reading in children of all abilities is a vital job for the Enjoy Reading campaign.”

Rod Bristow, President of Pearson UK, said:

“Study after study has shown that reading for pleasure is a key indicator of future success for children, but demands on children’s attention and the difficulty of inspiring reluctant readers mean many are missing out. The Enjoy Reading campaign is designed to support parents and schools to inspire children of all abilities to read. We are also working with authors and experts on finding effective and innovative new ways of using technology to help children develop a lifelong love of reading.”

Pearson’s Enjoy Reading campaign will help more children develop their enjoyment of reading by:

  • Increasing access to books and normalising enjoyment of reading
  • Inspiring children of all abilities in primary school to read more by giving them the chance to win 100,000 free books. The books are given to schools by Pearson in online and traditional formats as part of a new national ‘Read for My School’ challenge, run in partnership with Booktrust and the DfE.
  • Giving away 1.4 million inspiring books to all families with reception age children in England and Wales over the next 12 months as part of Booktime, run in conjunction with Booktrust.
  • Giving parents support and advice and putting books in the formats children enjoy 
  • Launching a new Enjoy Reading website with tips and advice from experts and famous authors on how to make reading enjoyable, and set the habit early.
  • Delivering a free parents’ guide  and specially designed free e-books that children can read onscreen, with expert advice on how to help kids enjoy reading and a new digital searchcloud to help identify the books to inspire them.
  • Delivering innovative new ways for schools to inspire children to read
  • Piloting the power of plays and their ability to help children develop their literacy skills in the classroom thanks to a specially commissioned project with top children’s author Julia Donaldson of ‘The Gruffalo’ fame.
  • Working with playwright and Professor of Reading Frank Cottrell-Boyce on the Heroes series of books, weaving captivating fiction with state-of-the-art digital teaching resources to inspire even the most reluctant reader and take advantage of children’s love of going online.

Visit the site here:



Notes to Editors

1. For further media enquiries, or to set up an interview with Mariella Frostrup on Friday 19 October, please call Daniel Sheridan, Juliana Bruton or Sally Aldous on 020 7260 2700.

2. Survey methodology

  • 1Pearson commissioned YouGov to survey 2008 parents of children aged 2 to 11. The survey was carried out online in August 2012.
  • 2Pearson commissioned ResearchBods to survey English teachers working in secondary schools in the UK. Four hundred and ten English teachers from all regions of the UK were surveyed online in March/April 2012.

3. You can find out more about the new Read for my School competition at



Peter Hughes
Pearson plc
Keywords: Social Impact & Volunteering | Booktime | Pearson | Pearson UK | books | literacy | raising literacy levels | reading | we give books global

CAMPAIGN: We Give Books Global

CONTENT: Press Release