One To One Support To Keep Kids Reading

Local charity Learn to Love to Read distributes over 1300 packs during lockdown

Words say it all

Learn to Love to Read is a small local charity supporting those struggling with reading, which is an essential life skill. The unequal impact of Covid-19 will make their work more important than ever.

Research just published by the Royal Society predicts all year groups will feel the impact of school closures throughout their adult working lives, stretching into the 2080s. This damage from the pandemic will not be evenly spread, says the study. Those already disadvantaged are likely to be among those who have missed out most from trying to study at home, rather than face-to-face in the classroom.

Another new study from the Data Evaluation and Learning for Viral Epidemics (DELVE) group shows that the achievement gap between the top and lowest-performing pupils in Year 3 widened by 52% during lockdown.

Learn to Love to Read works in partnership with seven Wandsworth primary schools, mostly chosen because they have a high Pupil Premium (Free School Meals) percentage. Many also have a significant number of EAL children. They support children in the early stages of learning to read (Key Stage 1), prepare pre-schoolers to be ready to read, and equip parents to support reading at home. Children receiving one-to-one support are selected by partner schools because they need a bit of extra input. They help make children confident readers, which sets them up for success in life.

Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, all of this work took place on school premises. When schools closed in March 2020, their work suddenly stopped. They have really missed being in schools for the last part of the school year – the image shows a message from some of their volunteers to the children they were working with before lockdown. As a team they have worked hard to pivot their work, adding specially-written stories and new films to their website; distributing 1,350 Reading for Pleasure packs; and now adapting their one-to-one reading support and parent training to be delivered online.

Their aim of making #everychildareader has not changed, but they need to use their expertise and existing positive relationships to develop new ways of achieving this.

If you would like to support their work or hear more about joining the volunteer team, check out their website or email

August 19, 2020