Books Left on the Shelf; A Fifth of Pupils Only Read Blogs and Magazines

Article excerpt

Byline: Laura Clark Education Correspondent

ONE in five youngsters never picks up books outside school, a poll has found. Instead, websites and blogs have become children's reading matter of choice.

Pupils ranked social networking sites, blogs, general websites and magazines above books in a major survey of their reading habits.

A quarter did not believe that being a proficient reader would help them achieve success in future.

A similar proportion thought that being successful meant having lots of clothes, being famous and owning a flash car.

The findings came in a study of 2,176 pupils aged seven to 15 by the National Literacy Trust, which is backing an initiative to encourage reading using footballers as role models. Players have been asked to name their favourite books - Wayne Rooney chose Harry Potter And The Philosopher's Stone - and work with schools and libraries to promote reading.

The survey found that 19 per cent never read fiction books and 20 per cent never read non-fiction.

In contrast, almost two-thirds surf websites every week, 55 per cent read emails and 46 per cent blogs. Just 40 per cent said they read fiction every week. Meanwhile 24 per cent failed to see a link between success and reading. …