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World Book Day 2023: activity ideas for EYFS, KS1 and KS2

Looking for ideas to celebrate World Book Day? Here are some fantastic activities that’ll spark each child’s imagination and bring their reading to life, ideal for EYFS, KS1, and KS2!

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What is World Book Day?

World Book Day is an annual event designed to promote the importance of reading and writing for pleasure.

The first-ever World Book Day was organised by UNESCO and took place on April 23rd, 1995. The next World Book Day will be happening on March 2nd, 2023, and it’ll be celebrating its 26th anniversary!

Why is it important to celebrate World Book Day?

World Book Day is a great opportunity to encourage children to read more and actively seek enjoyment from books. Doing this will not only enhance their vocabulary, but also boost their imagination and help them develop core literacy skills they can use outside of the classroom.

Giving reading a central position in your child or pupils’ lives by taking part in World Book Day is a great opportunity to kick-start a life-long love of reading. And to help you get started, we’ve created a list of activities that are ideal for learners of all ages!


World Book Day activities for EYFS (ages 5 and below)

Share your favourite nursery rhymes

World Book Day is a great time to introduce little ones to your favourite nursery rhymes and poems. This activity works particularly well on World Book Day, as you can join other parents or teachers to create ‘group rhyme time’.

Share a selection of rhymes in a group by reading them out loud, and encourage other parents or teachers to take part. Doing this will bring these classic stories to life like never before, introducing young children to the joy that stories can bring!

Ask them to reenact their favourite story

Read a passage from a story out loud to your child or pupils. Then, encourage them to act out the events you just read. Your child could take the role of their favourite character from the story or, if you’re in a group, you could give each learner a different character to play.

This activity will encourage them to use their imagination and enhance their comprehension skills by giving them a chance to directly act out its narration and structure.

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World Book Day activities for KS1 (ages 5-7)

Encourage them to read their favourite book

Ask your child or pupils to read a book of their choice. Then, encourage them to reflect on the characters and their personalities by asking them to picture them in their minds.

To help with this activity, you could ask them to create a mindmap about their favourite character with their thoughts about them. Or, they could retell the story in their own way.

Ask them to draw their favourite character

After reading a book of their choosing or selecting a passage from a story, ask each child to draw their favourite character from the book on paper. Encourage them to be as creative as they like. You’ll soon see their personality shine through!

This activity is a fun way to help your child think about what they’ve just read and to come up with their own creative ideas.


World Book Day activities for KS2 (ages 7-11)

Encourage them to write their very own story

Ask your pupils or child to come up with some ideas for a story, including its characters and basic storyline, giving them lots of time to come up with exciting ideas.

Once they’ve jotted their ideas down, encourage them to write a brief plot synopsis. Once they’ve done this, ask them to write the first page of their story or draw out the first act as a film storyboard!

Ask them to write a book review

Visit the local library and ask your child or pupils to pick out a book they like the look of. Then, ask them to write a review, encouraging them to say what they liked or disliked about it.

Writing a book review will not only polish their writing skills, but it’ll also encourage them to think about the kinds of stories they like — and why!


Concluding thoughts

Reading isn’t just great for developing literacy skills: it can also have positive health benefits and reduce stress. With this in mind, World Book Day is the perfect opportunity to help your child or pupils discover their love of reading.

Looking for more ways to mark the occasion? To celebrate World Book Day’s 25th anniversary, we’re running a competition where 10 children can each win a bundle of books worth £20! Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to find out more.

For even more ways to liven up your reading, why not download DoodleEnglish, the interactive English app for ages 4-14? It covers literacy, spelling, reading and writing and is filled with thousands of interactive exercises, ensuring learning is always fun and engaging!

Happy reading!

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