Playing by the book

Reviews of kids' books and the crazy, fun stuff they inspire us to do

I bet you have something in common with Michael Rosen and The Duchess of Cornwall

Posted on | May 9, 2012 | 13 Comments

…And with Lauren Laverne, Shami Chakrabarti and even Jamie Oliver!

All these people have made a very simple promise: during 2012 they will share 20 books with others.

It’s simple isn’t it?

And why have they made this promise?

Because they know the importance, value and joy of books.

Because they know what a difference a love of reading can make.

Because they know books can bring people together.

Because they want to pass on their passion for books to the children in their lives.

Because they want to support Bookstart.

Bookstart is a UK-based, world-renowned reading programme which gifts free books to babies, toddlers and 3-year-olds. This year Bookstart is 20 years old and one of the ways it is celebrating this milestone is by encouraging you, me and anyone who loves books to take their pledgeto pledge to share 20 books with others this year.

In a year when Bookstart, and two other UK bookgifting schemes Booktime and Booked Up, have had to weather a 50% cut in government funding and face a further 20% cut in funding this year, I’m standing up for books, and especially for sharing books with children. I’ve taken the pledge – will you?

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Comments

13 Responses to “I bet you have something in common with Michael Rosen and The Duchess of Cornwall”

  1. Stacey
    May 9th, 2012 @ 1:06 am

    What a great organization!
    Stacey recently posted..How Many Jellybeans?

  2. Zoe
    May 9th, 2012 @ 7:22 am

    Yes Stacey, if you were over here, I think Bookstart would be right up your street!
    Zoe recently posted..I bet you have something in common with Michael Rosen and The Duchess of Cornwall

  3. sandhya
    May 9th, 2012 @ 8:18 am

    Oh, is this limited to the UK? I interpreted ‘sharing 20 books’ as reading 20 books and speaking about them on blogs/fb/twitter, etc., until I read the above two comments. That’s sad. Would have loved to participate.
    sandhya recently posted..Of summer and lemonade

  4. Clara
    May 9th, 2012 @ 8:28 am

    Count me in! A brilliant cause.
    Clara recently posted..top tips for the perfect secret den!

  5. Elli
    May 9th, 2012 @ 9:15 am

    I agree with Sandhya – the wording is ambiguous. I’ve interpreted ‘sharing’ to mean simply reading & talking about books. We probably read that number in less than a week! I think it’s so incredibly sad that some children don’t get 20 books read to them in a whole year.
    Elli recently posted..If You’re Up There

  6. Zoe
    May 9th, 2012 @ 9:31 am

    Hi Sandhya, Elli,

    I think the wording is deliberately ambiguous – to encourage people to do something with books any how they can, whether that is reading them, gifting them, reviewing them, alerting friends to them, – so see the ambiguity as something that is freeing, rather than limiting :-)

    As to it being UK only, Bookstart only works in the UK, but I’m sure they’d be happy for anyone anywhere in the world to share more books with kids. My comment to Stacey was more about her professional background – she’s a literacy specialist in the US, and if she lived here, I’m sure she’d be following the work of Bookstart closely.

    Yay Clara!
    Zoe recently posted..I bet you have something in common with Michael Rosen and The Duchess of Cornwall

  7. Library Mice
    May 9th, 2012 @ 10:01 am

    Obviously, I am in, 100%.
    Library Mice recently posted..The Baby that Roared!

  8. Zoe
    May 9th, 2012 @ 11:26 am

    Hooray for Library Mice!

  9. Gayatri
    May 9th, 2012 @ 3:19 pm

    I will definitely share.

  10. Zoe
    May 9th, 2012 @ 4:20 pm

    Hi Gayatri, Great to have you comment – thanks so much for “delurking” :-) And super to hear you’ll be sharing some books – how lovely!

  11. Ruth
    May 9th, 2012 @ 9:21 pm

    what a brilliant idea and thanks for highlighting it Zoe. Will definetly look into this as have always been impressed with Bookstart
    Ruth recently posted..Fancy winning the childrens book ‘Oh No George’ by Chris Haughton?

  12. Katherine Woodfine
    May 11th, 2012 @ 12:27 pm

    Hi all,

    Just to say that the Booktrust team would be delighted for anyone to make the pledge, no matter where in the world you are! Although our campaign is about supporting the Bookstart scheme which is 20 this year, it’s also about encouraging people everywhere, and of all ages, to share and enjoy books – so the more the merrier.

    You might also be interested to know that although the Bookstart scheme was the first of its kind in the world, many other countries have followed in its footsteps. Find out about our international affiliates here: http://www.bookstart.org.uk/about-us/bookstart-around-the-world/international-affiliates/

    Thanks all for your support for Bookstart 20 – it is very much appreciated by all of us at Booktrust.

    Katherine (Children’s Web Editor)

  13. Melanie
    May 14th, 2012 @ 10:48 pm

    How neat is this?! Such a cool organization.

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