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A third of UK children find themselves unrepresented in books, says survey

The results stated that 33 per cent of kids "do not see themselves in what they read"

By: Lifestyle Desk | New Delhi | December 3, 2020 5:00:10 pm
The data was collected from 58,346 children and young people from age group nine to 18. (Representational Image)

According to a survey, a third of children in the UK do not see themselves in the books they read, reported The Guardian. The survey by the National Literacy Trust accounted for almost 60,000 children and young people.

The data was collected from 58,346 children and young people from the age group nine to 18 who were put together in the months between January and mid-March. The results stated that 33 per cent of kids “do not see themselves in what they read”. The report further added that the proportion increased “to 40 per cent of children from ethnic minority backgrounds, and to 46 per cent of children from black ethnic backgrounds.” On the contrary, the proportion is lesser for white children  — a meagre 31 per cent.

“The struggle to find characters who look similar, or share similar characteristics or circumstances, can impact a child’s engagement with reading and its lifelong benefits. Just one book a child really connects with can spark a love of reading which can change their life story and help them to succeed in school and in life,” NLT was quoted as saying.

The report, Seeing Yourself in What You Read, follows research by Centre for Literacy in Primary Education which approximates that the proportion of British children’s books featuring Asian or minority ethnic main character noticed a rise to 5 per cent in 2019 from just 1 per cent in 2017.

The same report quotes new research which adds that a child’s ability to see themselves represented in books is affected by their socioeconomic circumstances.

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