Published: 12:28, 15 July 2019
| Updated: 12:28, 15 July 2019
Children taking part in schools literacy scheme Buster’s Book Club achieved a staggering 10 million of home-reading minutes this academic year.
The 2018-19 figures for the KM Charity Team’s reading-rewards scheme were revealed at special celebrations at Leeds Castle.
They represent an increase of 1.5 million minutes on the previous academic year.
The celebrations were attended by children from classes that had won Buster’s Book Club district challenges, as well as representatives of supporter organisations Kent and Medway councils, The Education People and the castle itself.
Sean Carter of The Education People said: “Literacy is so important for children, to be able to access the curriculum at school, but also reading for fun and realising reading is not just something to be done at school but to be done at home with family, friends, parents and carers.”
Buster’s Book Club is designed to make reading cool, and sets children individual home-reading targets. Children take on a series of challenges throughout the year, including inter-class and inter-school events, which culminate with an annual record reading attempt.
Prizes for the inter-school challenges include story-teller visits, hampers of books, and free-entry tickets to visitor attractions.
KM Charity Team chief executive Simon Dolby said: “These really are amazing figures for Buster’s Book Club, and I can think of no clearer proof of the benefits of signing up with the scheme.
“It’s such a simple initiative to set up and administer, and I would urge other schools in the county to register for it now.
“More than 32,000 children from 110 Kent schools took part this year, and it is frankly humbling that Buster’s Book Club helped them to achieve more than 10 million home-reading minutes.
“That can only have a significant impact on the literacy performance of those schools and children.”
In addition to the organisations represented at the celebrations at Leeds Castle, Buster’s is also supported by the Ernest Cook Trust, Little Cheyne Court wind farm, the Kent Community Foundation, Golding Vision, Orbit, Specsavers, Diggerland, Hornby, Wildwood, Rotary, Acorns Read and Grow, the Crown Foundation and the Gibbons Trust.
And watch a video of the celebrations at Leeds Castle here: