Saturday, 13 July 2024
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Saturday, 13 July 2024

Charity unveils new list of must-have titles to help teens discover a love for reading

THE UK’s leading children’s reading charity, BookTrust, has announced the titles which will be available as part of this year’s Bookbuzz programme aimed at young teenagers. Books such as the WWII novel, Code Name King Fisher by Liz Kelsall and Sunday Times Children’s Book of the Week, Murder at Snowfall by F. R. Hitchcock share the billing with other titles such as new thrilling adventure, Like a Charm from multi-award winner, Elle McNicoll.  

The reading programme, designed for pupils in Years 7 and 8 gives students the chance to discover and explore specially selected fiction or non-fiction books, all of which vary in text complexity and challenge and include dyslexia-friendly options.

Bookbuzz encourages students – many of whom have never owned a book of their own, to experience the joy of reading for pleasure and provides teachers and school librarians with a host of resources. Last year, over 1,200 schools across the country took part in the programme.

BookTrust research has found that reading regularly and by choice can bring profound and wide-ranging benefits that can have a lifelong positive impact on children’s lives. It’s proven that children who read are more likely to overcome disadvantages caused by inequalities, are happier, healthier and experience better mental wellbeing. Reading can also help develop empathy and contribute to better exam results and progress across the curriculum.

Lizzie Catford, Director of Children’s Books at BookTrust, said:

“We know that reading for pleasure can be both magical and transformative for the lives of children and is something that every child in the UK should experience, no matter their background. It’s vital schools are empowered and supported to embed a love of reading into students’ lives – which will not only impact their own development. but create positive cycles for generations to come. I urge all secondary schools to sign up for Bookbuzz and encourage their students to discover the joys of getting lost in a book.”

The Bookbuzz list of 16 books, is chosen by an independent panel of experts, including teachers from both mainstream and special schools, librarians, BookTrust’s disability consultant and other children’s book experts – arguably most importantly, the books are then vetted by a group of 11 to 13-year-olds. The final list reflects a variety of genres, styles and reading levels.

Fleur Hitchcock, author of Murder at Snowfall, said:

“Lots of children have a choice in the books that they read and own, and lots don’t. The brilliant thing about the Bookbuzz scheme is that it is democratic, every child in a class gets the opportunity to choose their own book that they will get to keep, and they get a brilliant selection to choose from so there’s bound to be a book that suits them.”

Code Name Kingfisher is another book included in the selection, author Liz Kessler, said:

“I am absolutely thrilled to bits to see Code Name Kingfisher included in this year’s Bookbuzz selection. Reading for pleasure is so important for young people and this brilliant selection is such a fantastic way of giving young people a great and varied choice of books to get their teeth into and hopefully get the reading buzz for life!”

Registration is now open and closes on 20 September. Find out more about here: https://www.booktrust.org.uk/what-we-do/programmes-and-campaigns/bookbuzz/about-bookbuzz/.

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