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Literacy charity Beanstalk launches sessions in Suffolk to help struggling children with their reading

PUBLISHED: 17:08 13 December 2017 | UPDATED: 17:08 13 December 2017

Beanstalk is looking for volunteers to help children in Suffolk to read. Picture: BEANSTALK

Beanstalk is looking for volunteers to help children in Suffolk to read. Picture: BEANSTALK

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A children’s literacy charity has begun working with schools in the county to help support children who have fallen behind with their reading.

Children’s literacy charity Beanstalk features support volunteers going into primary schools to work with youngsters who struggle or have fallen behind in their reading.

The reading volunteers go into schools to help three children two times a week for 30 minutes, and work with children one-to-one to establish where their difficulties are, listen to them read and tailor sessions for each child.

They also aim to inspire youngsters who don’t read to find the stories and books they enjoy and pursue reading for pleasure.

Latest figures have suggested that nearly one in three children left primary school in Suffolk last year below the reading standard expected.

In a series of special launch events, youngsters from Whitehouse Primary School in Ipswich and Sudbury Primary School joined children’s author Lisa Thompson for book readings of celebrated children’s books.

Jo Holmes, area manager for Beanstalk said: “We’re very excited to move into a new area of the country and I’m thrilled that Lisa Thompson helped us to celebrate.

“Alongside Lisa we had prestigious speakers, including John Helleur and Jeanie Butler.

“Last academic year 31% of Suffolk children left primary school unable to read at the expected level.

“If these children had received support from our trained reading helpers then this might have been a lower figure.

“Beanstalk will be able to make a real difference to this statistic and grow a love of reading through the support of our reading helpers.”

The cause is now looking for local people who can help volunteer as reading supporters, who will go into schools and help children with their reading.

Krystal Vittles, children’s lead at Suffolk Libraries which helped launch the scheme in Suffolk, added: “Suffolk Libraries is delighted that Beanstalk has launched in Suffolk.

“We’re looking forward to working with them and supporting their mission to help children reach their potential through reading.”

To find out how to get involved, call 0845 450 0307 or email the charity here.

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