Kids Who Don’t Know Books, Know Disney

Many children are starting school having never been read a story, a survey reveals today.

More than half of primary teachers have seen a least one child begin formal education with no experience of being told stories at home. Teachers said the stories pupils did know often seemed to come from watching Disney cartoons.

Pie Corbett, who acts as an educational adviser to the government, said too many children were left to watch TV instead of being read a bedtime story, often by busy middle-class parents.

Corbett said: “This isn’t just an economic thing – it’s not just people who come from poor backgrounds, it’s across the whole of society. You get a lot of children coming from very privileged backgrounds who’ve spent a lot of time in front of the TV and not enough time snuggled up with a good book. The TV does the imagining for you – and it doesn’t care whether you’re listening or not.”

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