Celebrate International Literacy Day with three ways to support reading at home

Alexandra Wladich  //  Sep 6, 2017

Celebrate International Literacy Day with three ways to support reading at home

Today is International Literacy Day and in celebration of the day, Scholastic is calling attention to the global need to increase access to children’s books in the home and providing ways for families to build home libraries and encourage their kids to become lifelong readers.

Findings from the Kids & Family Reading Report™ suggest simple insights that can help caregivers everywhere support literacy, the data reveals low averages of children’s books in the homes of kids ages 0–17, reporting 104 books on average in the U.S., 140 in the U.K., 159 in Australia, 89 in India, and 80 in Canada, regardless of the number of children in the home.

The research underscores the importance of access to books by showing that when kids have a large home library, they are more likely to be frequent readers who read books for fun 5–7 days a week. The research also provides actionable takeaways any family can embrace to inspire a culture of reading at home, including:

  • Ask family members, friends, librarians and teachers for book recommendations: In each country, children ages 6–17 find their best book ideas from many different people and places. Top sources are:
    • 51% of kids in the U.S. say teachers and school librarians
    • 45% of kids in the U.K report the library
    • 72% and 82% of kids in Australia and India, respectively, look to their parents
    • 50% of kids in Canada get ideas from friends, siblings or cousins
  • Find books that make kids laugh: “Make me laugh” is the #1 quality kids ages 6–17 look for when choosing books to read for fun (42% U.S., 63% U.K., 61% Australia, 62%, India, and 46% Canada).
  • Set aside time to read aloud together—and keep it going as a child gets older: An overwhelming majority of children ages 6–17 reported they love (or loved) read aloud time at home and the top reason was “it’s a special time with my parent,” yet many  parents stop reading aloud at age six.

Join the conversation using #LiteracyDay!