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Love reading? Well, it’s never too early to start planning entertaining World Book Day activities; whether you’re a parent, teacher or the cool aunt/uncle, we’re here to guide you.

The World Book Day charity is in its 23rd year of celebration and we thought we’d give you some helpful tips on how best to encourage more children to add some reading into their daily routine. With the help of the National Book Tokens Ltd, 15 million book tokens are available for children across the UK and Ireland.

Discover our top tips on how to celebrate World Book Day 2020 below…


When is World Book Day?

Take out your calendars and write this down. World Book Day will be brought to you on 5th March 2020 this year and the charity has already released its list of 12 books available with their £1 book tokens.

From rising stars like award-winning author Matt Haig, to the well-known author of the Alex Rider spy novels, Anthony Horowitz, this year’s list is full of exciting new depictions of modern literature that’s sure to inspire creative young minds.

Why do we celebrate World Book Day?

If you’re wondering how it all works, we’ve got the inside scoop for you right here. When did world book day start? 1995 was the year the United Nations Educations, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) established this world-wide tradition.

What is World Book Day?

It’s a day to celebrate all things books and to celebrate those authors and illustrators that create these worlds and characters that can inspire children.

What are World Book Day tokens for?

All children will receive World Book Day tokens at school; the aim is to supply every child with a book of their own and to promote more reading amongst young people. These £1 book tokens can be used in thousands of book stores to supply every child with a free book from the approved selection of 12 books.


Dress up like your favourite character…

Weasley twins costume

While we think reading is a fundamental part of children’s learning, one of the top reasons World Book Day is hugely popular is schools’ dedication to the art of dressing up.

The world has seen some fantastic World Book Day costumes over the years, with people of all ages joining in to celebrate the day in style. Half the fun is trying to figure out which character from which book your friends have chosen.

If you’re pondering what to wear for World Book Day, consider the characters in your child’s favourite novel. Are they a fan of classics like the Roald Dahl novels? Do they wish to join Harry, Ron and Hermione at Hogwarts? Or be the one who stands out and dress up as Gangsta Granny.

While we think the representation of the Weasley twins from the Harry Potter books in the picture above is top notch, we think you can do better.

If you or your children are a fan of the books, you’ll love reading our post of the top Harry Potter filming locations in the UK.


Donate to a charity…

Donations to charity

While it can be all fun and games most of the time, we should remember this annual event was created to inspire more young people to read.

The World Book Day charity encourages donations from schools across the world and has previously reached a total of over £440,000, which has made it possible to send over 220,000 books to countless young people who are unable to access the resources needed or desired, with the help of the Inspiring Reader campaign, which helps source books for children in Kenya.

Hosting a World Book Day event at your school will help spread this charity’s message and raise funds for increasing the number of books year-by-year.


Share a story…

Teacher reading a book to the class

Whether you’re a teacher reading to a class full of students, a parent looking to inspire your children or simply a friend wishing to pass along a recommendation, sharing a story for World Book Day is a must.

We don’t encourage you to read an 845-page book out loud, but spending even as little as ten minutes a day reading to children helps stimulate their imagination and it could just be the beginning of a new-found love for all things literature.

Sharing a story isn’t just about reading at someone, but also to encourage children to discuss a book plot with their friends and family. Reading can be done anywhere and it’s about time we give children the tools to find their passions.

If you want to take this a step further, why not organise a class trip and follow in the footsteps of Beatrix Potter?


Host a short story competition…

Trophy exploding with star confetti

Let’s face it, the best way to inspire young people is to show them what they can get out of it. Hosting a World Book Day short story competition will get those creative juices flowing and have young people considering what makes an intriguing story. Put your own spin on a World Book Day theme – it’s a lot easier to judge if all the stories are in the same genre!

Make the prize desirable and watch how hard your students work. It doesn’t have to be a luxury 5* hotel in Paris for the whole family or anything, but consider something better than a bag of sweets.

And who knows? You may just find you have a future J K Rowling in the midst!

Fancy celebrating your child’s success with a UK trip? We have gathered a list of the best holiday spots for book lovers.


Encourage an activities day…

Arts and crafts

If you’re looking for World Book Day activity ideas for primary schools, then look no further than a creative-inducing afternoon of arts and crafts!

You can download activity books relating to the novels on each year’s book list. Go fishing with Bear and Hare, Spot the Difference with Aliens or join A Spoonful of Murder to create your very own murder mystery!

Have a look through the World Book Day resources page for further ideas on how best to target certain age groups with fun activities.


Start a book club…

Book club conversation

While an afternoon of crafting and playing dress up can seem too silly for teenagers, we have World Book Day ideas for secondary schools that are well-worth considering.

A YA Book Club is just the kind of social event that actively encourages teens to spend their free time reading a variety of books across genres ready for discussion in a relaxing environment.

If you want to delve deeper than this, we have created a literary Devon guide for exploring the places mentioned in famous writers’ novels.


Have you taken any of our advice? We’d love to hear from you on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram channels. Get in touch now with snapshots of your terrific creations! If you’re planning a holiday with us this year, it might be worth taking a look through our Travel Guide for the top sites in your area.

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