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Book Trust - Letterbox club | Key partners working with the virtual school | Birmingham City Council

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Book Trust - Letterbox club

Birmingham Virtual school are thrilled to continue their close partnership with Book Trust. Book Trust is the UK's largest children's reading charity.

They are dedicated to getting children reading. Each year they reach 3.9 million children across the UK with books, resources and support to help develop a love of reading.

They get children reading in lots of different ways, but our priority is to get more children excited about books, rhymes and stories – because if reading is fun, children will want to do it.

Across the UK, children are enrolled for the Letterbox Club by local authorities, schools and nurseries.

Each child receives their own colourful parcel of books, maths games, stationery and other high quality materials once every month for six months, from May to October.

For many children, it's the first time they have had a letter or a parcel through the post and for some it's the first time they have had books of their own.

For the last few years Birmingham Virtual School have sent out Letterbox parcels for 7 months of each year that are delivered straight to the homes of eligible LAC.

The parcels include books that have been picked and reviewed by a panel of judges, along with maths games and stationary! There is always a good range of materials inside the parcels, and across the subscription, there is a range of books – both fiction and non-fiction – that cover a variety of genres so there is something to suit everyone.

The Letterbox Club gives children the ability to develop a love of reading through having their own set of books, and increases the range of quality reading materials available at home that can improve a child’s reading and numeracy, spelling and exposure to cultural and literal references.

Previously these have been sent out to all LAC in mainstream schools in reception to year 6, however, as the books packs span two year groups, this year we have decided to send these out to years 1, 3, 5, ad 7.

The packs start off with a Festive Parcel that arrives just in time for the Christmas Holidays and continue to come out each month until June. 

Previous feedback from surveys conducted by The Book Trust have been positive and young people have said that they value and enjoy the materials they receive. 

Pilot studies of the Letterbox Club by the University of Leicester have shown very positive outcomes with many foster carers reporting increased engagement with their child in educational activities – including significantly improving the time spent reading for pleasure at home – which in turn has seen many children improving standardised scores in reading.

Literacy outcomes for children in care in Birmingham are currently above national average for this pupil cohort and we believe the previous promotion of Letterbox has supported this progress and achievement.

Find out more about Letterbox Club.