easyJet launch European-wide campaign to get kids hooked on a book « Taylor Herring

easyJet launch European-wide campaign to get kids hooked on a book

Posted on July 12th, 2018 James in Taylor Herring News.

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A new study into child literacy reveals that, almost four in ten parents (38%) said their child has fewer than 10 books at home and on average, British children aged between 6 – 12 have not visited a public library in over six months.

The research by airline easyJet has led to the launch of a European-wide initiative to encourage children to get hooked on a book this Summer – 300 ‘Flybraries’ (flying libraries) hit the runways today stocked with 17,500 children’s books translated in seven languages.

The campaign has been delivered by PR and creative agency Taylor Herring.

The results released today also show that reading for pleasure is in decline with the average British child reading only 11 books a year and spending only four hours a week reading for pleasure (34 minutes per day) in their free time.

The alarming study by the UK’s largest airline easyJet, who polled 2,000 British parents with children aged between 6 – 12, reveals that over a fifth (22%) of parents said their child had not visited a public library in over a year.

Three-quarters of parents (75%) also said that they were concerned that their child’s vocabulary may be affected due to reading fewer books.

easyJet is teaming up with Bloomsbury Children’s Books and Alma Books to put books including; Kid Normal, Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland, The Jungle Book, Dr Dolittle and The Secret Garden, in passenger seat-pockets as the world’s largest in-flight holiday lending library takes to the skies today.

Tina Milton, Director of Cabin Crew at easyJet said: “This summer we will fly approximately five million families across Europe on their summer holidays and our in-flight lending library is stocked with over 17,500 books ready for children to pick up, read and then leave behind for the next passenger. Reading is so important for fuelling a child’s development, vocabulary and imagination and a flight provides the perfect opportunity for them to get stuck into a book. We are passionate about creating family friendly initiatives that make flying with us fun and easier for parents.”

Campaign ambassadors and best-selling children’s authors Greg James (BBC1 Radio 1) and Chris Smith said: One of the main reasons we wanted to write Kid Normal was to de-mystify the role of ‘the author’ as serious and impenetrable figures, and to show that reading and writing stories is not only one of the most amazing uses of your imagination but to show that it is something that is for everyone.

It’s an incredibly rewarding and fun activity and when easyJet told us their plans to get books into the hands of kids and to encourage them to write their own, we couldn’t have been more keen to get involved. Writing our series of books has been one of the most enjoyable things we’ve ever done and we want to encourage as many people as possible to give it a go.”

The duo launched the initiative at London Gatwick Airport today with a special reading and book signing for young travellers.

The initiative is being supported by the National Literacy Trust who are partnering with easyJet to encourage children to read more books over the six-week school holidays. The partnership means that parents can download fun activities for the family over the summer to encourage literacy. According to the charity’s own research* of over 42,000 children aged 8 – 18, almost one child in ten (9.4%) does not own a book of their own, rising to one in eight (13.1%) children from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Jonathan Douglas, Director of the National Literacy Trust said: “Books have the power to transform children’s lives, which is why it is so alarming that more than three-quarters of a million children in the UK don’t have a single book to call their own, and one in five haven’t been to a library in the past year. Getting books into the hands of children, and helping them discover a love of reading, can set them on the path to a more successful future. easyJet’s Flybrary initiative is a fantastic way of getting thousands of children into reading this summer.”

 Nearly half of the children (42.5%) surveyed by the National Literacy Trust said that they rarely read outside of the classroom with three in ten (30%) admitting that they never pick up a book past school hours. The charity’s statistics also show that the average child (aged 8-18) spends just 26 minutes per day reading physical books.

Additionally, almost all respondents (94%) agreed that the breadth of electronic entertainment devices available today, has led to the decline in children reading for pleasure.

In fact, reading came eighth (44%) in a list of activities that parents believed their children took the most pleasure in, coming in behind watching TV (81%), playing on a smartphone/tablet (72%), playing video games (64%) and watching movies (59%).

Over nine in ten (92%) parents surveyed agreed that digital devices has reduced the attention span of children, making it more difficult for them to get stuck into and finish a book.

easyJet’s fleet of Flybraries will enable children to start reading books on a flight and then when they land download free samples of books at www.flybrariesbookclub.com – the website will also host the airline’s summer writing competition to help children spread their creative writing wings.

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