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National Literacy Trust Research Results

The National Literacy Trust evaluated the impact of using the First News Education reading packages in schools. An online survey and reading test conducted among over 500 children in Years 3 to 6 before and after participation in classroom activities showed positive changes in both reading attitudes and attainment.

Significant progression in reading skills

The number of pupils who achieved ‘above average’ scores increased by 13%. There were significant improvements in children’s inferential knowledge and deduction skills.

Improvements in wider attitudes towards the news and reading

Significant increases in the number of pupils reading other materials in their free time including both fiction books and non-fiction books. 4/5 pupils disagree that they would be embarrassed to be seen reading outside class.

Children are encouraged to find out about news and to actually read the stories in order to answer comprehension questions. The iHub is also great in both guided reading sessions as an activity and as an additional homework tool.

Significantly improved attitudes and behaviours towards newspapers

  • Children become 50% more likely to read newspapers in their free time (42% versus 28%)
  • Three quarters of children now think newspapers are interesting and more than half think they are fun
  • Newspapers rose to third place in the list of materials that children read outside class (previously sixth)
  • Children have more confidence in their own reading abilities with 62% saying they can read and understand a whole newspaper article, an 11 percentage point increase.

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