Research to better understand how carers can be supported to engage in reading with their children, and how they can help them to develop a love of reading and maths, improve their academic attainment, and provide stability in foster placements.
In June 2016, NCB were commissioned by BookTrust to explore reading in foster families.
We wanted to understand how foster carers currently support their children to engage with reading, how this may be affected by other factors (e.g. region, age, personal experience, foster carers’ experience), and what additional help could be given to foster parents to increase this.
In addition, we were keen to understand how carers’ own experiences and confidence relate to the reading patterns and activities with their children, and how engagement with reading may influence their relationships.
The final report was published in June 2017.
This work involved a detailed literature review, survey with foster carers and children, and follow-up interviews with foster carers and children.
We found that foster carers generally have positive views on reading and read frequently, both alone and with their child. Children also reported generally positive views about reading.
- Foster carers recognise the benefits and importance of reading with their child;
- Foster carers’ educational attainment is linked to their reading habits and confidence;
- Foster carers are important reading role models for children;
- Placement stability is related to children’s reading abilities (as reported by carers);
- There are several barriers to shared reading in foster families;
- Some carers receive support to help their children with reading from a variety of sources; and
- Carers would benefit from further support to help their child with reading.
Read the full report.
Read the summary of findings.