World Book Day

What will you be doing for World Book Day?

World Book Day is starting to get all-too familiar.

Every year seems to be the ‘same old same old’ and there are lots of retailers cashing in on the ‘dressing up’ aspect of the day. Desperate parents that leave it too late to make something or those that just want an easy life end up spending a fair bit on costumes. You don’t have to spend a penny of course but it’s turned into big business. Just how many ‘Where’s Wally?’ children and Harry Potters do we need?

This was never the intention of WBD.

Someone forget to mention….the day is about coming together to appreciate reading.

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The hugely impressive World Book Day website is of course packed with fabulous tried and tested ideas for what to do and so it makes sense to plunder inspiration and resources from there.

Let’s remind ourselves what WBD is all about:

World Book Day is a celebration! It’s a celebration of authors, illustrators, books and (most importantly) it’s a celebration of reading. In fact, it’s the biggest celebration of its kind, designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, and marked in over 100 countries all over the world.

This year the folks at WBD HQ have lined up something special with two brand new 30-minute online exclusive shows which we can screen featuring some of the biggest and best authors and illustrators.

But some don’t like the commercialisation and the celeb-heavy monster that WBD has become. The reading lists aren’t as varied as they could be and is this another opportunity for publishers to sell more books.

As featured in an article for The Guardian, some top authors have rubbished the celebrity line-up of this year’s WBD titles describing the choice of books by famous names including Julian Clary and Clare Balding as patronising, cheap and demeaning. Writing on her blog, Chocolat author Joanne Harris, said she felt “the current spate of celebrity children’s books is having a detrimental effect, not just on children’s publishing, but on the reputation of children’s writing, and even on literacy in general”.

Celebrities also have a golden ticket to getting a book published. Would authors such as Clare Balding, Tom Fletcher, Julian Clary and Nadiya Hussain have become authors without their celebrity status? It’s highly unlikely. This is just a kick in the teeth for those with more writing talent that never get a sniff because they don’t have a ‘name’ to trade off.

Looking for something different to do on WBD?

An English teacher writing for the TES says forget dressing up and do something with more meaning. She shares 8 ideas that are well worth planning for next week.

What about combining maths and literacy?

Take a look at the excellent activities on offer from Third Space Learning.

One thought on “World Book Day

  • February 28, 2018 at 9:13 am

    Great article, thanks for sharing. I dislike the cashing in on the whole dressing up thing for World Book Day. Fortunately, my children’s school has invited them to wear pyjamas and to take along their favourite book, which is a much simpler idea, and still celebrates the books and authors above costumes.


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