England football star in bid to get more children reading

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At the start of the World Cup, England midfielder Frank Lampard has teamed up with the National Literacy Trust to encourage children to take ‘reading selfies’.


Frank Lampard has written his own series of children’s books, Frankie’s Magic Football

The charity’s latest prize draw challenges children to have their photo taken holding something they have read that relates to the World Cup, from a newspaper or book to a football sticker album.

Mr Lampard is a supporter of the National Literacy Trust’s football and literacy work, and has written his own series of children’s books, Frankie’s Magic Football, published by Little, Brown Books for Younger Readers.

The competition is inspired by the National Literacy Trust’s Love Football: Love Reading 2014 toolkit, a free resource for schools to inspire young people’s reading during the World Cup.

The resource will publish an original children’s story, written by author Tom Palmer, in 24 parts over the five weeks of the World Cup. Each chapter will be roughly 700 words long, equating to a five- to ten-minute classroom read.

As well forming an episode in an ongoing adventure story, each part will respond to the events that have taken place on and off the pitch on the previous day.  Instalments of the story will be published before 8am every weekday throughout the tournament, to ensure schools receive the most up-to-date chapter in time to use during the day.

Mr Lampard said, ‘I think the National Literacy Trust’s World Cup toolkit is a fantastic idea and a great resource for getting kids enthusiastic about reading and writing at a time when the world’s focus will be on football. I hope children enjoy reading the daily instalments while keeping up with the England team’s progress in Brazil.

‘My own children love hearing stories about football and I think the World Cup is a powerful inspiration for children to enjoy reading and to try writing their own stories.’

Jonathan Douglas, director of the National Literacy Trust, added, ‘We’re really excited to be uniting the hype around the 2014 World Cup in Brazil with children’s reading in this literacy toolkit. We know from our experience of working with reluctant readers just how powerful football can be in getting children to enjoy reading, which gives them vital skills for the future.’

Parents and teachers can challenge their children or pupils to take a World Cup reading selfie and submit them, along with a completed entry form, to competitions@literacytrust.org.uk before 5pm on Sunday 6 July.

Download the prize draw entry form here

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