HUNDREDS of children across Portsmouth are now experts on current affairs thanks to a reading initiative.
The Reading Passport scheme, backed by The News, aimed to help Key Stage 2 pupils improve their reading skills and create more of an understanding about the world around them.
Students aged between eight and 12 took part in the six-week project during which they received copies of The News. They will be awarded with certificates for completion in the coming weeks.
Vicky King, a teacher at Portsdown Primary School said the Reading Passport scheme went down well with her class. She said: ‘My class enjoyed finding out more about the local community and had fun doing the crosswords and puzzles.’
As well as finding it enjoyable, Mrs King said the scheme helped children’s literacy skills improve.
She said: ‘It helped all the children with their reading, especially those who didn’t have access to a paper.
‘It gave them something different to read and learn from and new words to add to their vocabulary.’
Councillor Neill Young is in charge of children and education at Portsmouth City Council and he believes the Reading Passport scheme has been a success. He said: ‘It’s been well received by all the schools that have taken part.’
The scheme focused on making reading enjoyable and Cllr Young feels the scheme, backed by 18 schools, did so. He said: ‘It’s important children enjoy learning about current affairs and the world around them, and the Reading Passport scheme has given pupils that opportunity.’
He added: ‘Encouraging children to learn about their local community and get a different perspective through understanding newspaper articles is vital.’
The News teamed up with CMC International and The News Foundation for the project.