Every Child A Reader

Children’s Books Ireland is delighted to announce the Every Child A Reader project. With this title, we are bringing all our school library book-gifting programmes under one umbrella.

Nearly 400 schools applied for school library support from Children’s Books Ireland in 2020. Additional funding has allowed us to choose 18 schools to work with this school term, increased from our original four Robert Dunbar Memorial Library schools, thanks to the generous support of the Ireland Funds, the Irish Copyright Licensing Agency and other donors. 

For this project, we have thought long and hard about the positive changes we can help make in schools and how that change will be made and sustained. The project takes its name from Children’s Books Ireland’s vision: every child a reader. We want every child in these schools to be reading more, enjoying reading more and reading more widely. We want them to see themselves in the books on their shelves, and to have a window to other cultures, other worlds, through reading. So, we’re providing brilliant books, 160 to begin with – books for all ages and interests.

Each school will also have a Champion of Reading – an author, illustrator or storyteller whose job is to encourage creativity and exploration of the new school library over a series of live Zoom workshops. National Literacy Trust (UK) research shows that author visits are associated with greater reading for pleasure: children who had an author visit to their school reported higher levels of reading enjoyment (68.2% vs 47.2%) and writing enjoyment (43.9% vs 32.4%) than their peers who didn’t receive a visit. Every class in every school will also have a pre-recorded video workshop delivered by one of the Champions of Reading.

Champions of Reading

  • Alan Nolan
  • Brian Conaghan
  • Chris Judge
  • Debbie Thomas
  • E.R. Murray
  • Fatti Burke
  • Juliette Saumande
  • Kim Sharkey
  • Malachy Doyle
  • Nicola Colton
  • Olivia Golden
  • Olivia Hope
  • Nicola Pierce
  • Pat Ryan
  • Shane Hegarty
  • Sheena Dempsey
  • Tarsila Krüse

We’ve learned from our in-person book-gifting events that the buzz and excitement created by students seeing their new books on display, giving them the opportunity to be creative and really celebrating reading as a whole school can have a huge impact on children’s interest in exploring their library, as well as raising awareness in the home by inviting families in to take part. We can’t recreate these moments exactly in these times, but we’ve including materials to help teachers create displays and celebrate reading in classrooms – there are posters, bunting, and a bookmark and stickers for every child with Chris Judge’s fabulous Every Child A Reader artwork on it.

We’re asking schools to complete the reading challenges on the poster – and come up with some of their own too. Schools that complete all 10 challenges will get an extra €1000 worth of  books in September, ones that they can choose themselves from specially curated Children’s Books Ireland book lists. These challenges were designed with the aim of making reading part of the fabric of school life, and giving all children in the school the chance to feel part of the success of their library.

Making every child a reader doesn’t just stop at school. We want to encourage students to bring books home and have conversations about what they’re reading with their families. To this end we’re providing each child with a flyer to bring home, providing tips on sharing a love of reading, and a space for students to complete in class about what they like to read to help start that conversation.

Congratulations to all of our schools – we are so excited to work with you!

  • An Teaghlaigh Naofa, Waterford
  • Ballymore National School, Donegal
  • Charleville CBS Primary, Cork
  • Doora National School, Clare
  • Lough Road Learning Centre, Armagh
  • Powerstown Educate Together National School, Dublin
  • Presentation Primary Fermoy, Cork
  • Presentation Primary School, Kilkenny
  • Ravenswell Primary School, Bray
  • Riverview Educate Together National School, Dublin
  • Saint Audoen’s National School, Dublin
  • Scoil Mhuire Senior, Dublin
  • Scoil Oilibhéir Naofa, Meath
  • St Joseph’s CBS, Louth
  • St. Brigid’s Junior School, Dublin
  • St. Cillian’s National School, Dublin
  • St. Joseph’s National School, Offaly
  • St.Edward’s National School, Sligo

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