World Book Day

World Book Day 2019

New research: Exploring the impact of World Book Day

The National Literacy Trust was commissioned by World Book Day to evaluate the impact of the initiative on the reading lives of children aged 8 to 11 in the UK.

Our new report covers research conducted between 2019 and 2021, which aimed to capture children’s perceptions of how the event supports their reading opportunities and influences their developing reading identities. It shows how World Book Day welcomes children into the world of books and reading in two ways: by helping all children become book owners, many for the first time, and by supporting a variety of activities and experiences essential for building life-long readers.

See key findings and download our World Book Day research report.

World Book Day is one of the highlights of our year at the National Literacy Trust! We love the annual celebration of authors, illustrators, books and the joy of reading.

How we supported you to celebrate a very 2021 World Book Day on Thursday 4 March!

While World Book Day 2021 was different due to lockdown, we had plenty of ideas for how to celebrate a very 2021 World Book Day on 4 March. These included some amazing activities planned in our Hubs, schools programmes and with our corporate partners.

Reading for pleasure is at the heart of World Book Day. We know that making every day a book day can have significant impacts on children and young people’s wellbeing. Three in five (59.3%) children and young people told us during the first lockdown that reading makes them feel better. It shows just how important it is to encourage children to read for pleasure during these very turbulent times.

Enjoy £1 World Book Day books

The £1 books by popular authors were still available via retailers and supermarkets where these stores are permitted to be open. Schools were invited to participate with details of printed and digital use tokens set out on the World Book Day site. You can find all of the year’s brilliant titles here.

Our Virtual School Library, in partnership with Oak Academy, also had a World Book Day theme from 1 March.


Every year local events take place for schools to get involved in, and we advise you to contact your school library service, public library or local bookshop to find out what is being planned.

The World Book Day website had details of how to join in with live events, now available to watch back, as well as recorded online classes.

We shared these ideas for teachers and practitioners looking for some prompts:

The famous dress up events in schools may be different if schools premises are closed, but you could still encourage children to wear a hat, badge, or costume for your online live lessons, and ask them to ‘show and tell’ with their favourite reading material

Like a challenge? Work with teachers from other classes, reading books or extracts for their pupils, but in disguise! Can they name the book and/or the teacher? (Remember to check publishers’ copyright restrictions for sharing books.)

Or how about creating a quiz based on any class books you’ve shared this school year? Whatever the book, questions about minor characters, locations, animals that appear in the story could get pupils scratching their heads!

Try these resources to help develop a love of reading among your class:

We also have premium resources available for those with a subscribed National Literacy Trust membership:

Celebrating World Book Day at home

The 2021 theme for World Book Day theme was ‘share a story’. You can encourage your students to share a story with the people they live with. These could include getting grandparents or other family members to read stories over video chat; setting aside a family reading time when everyone at home all read their own books or magazines; building a cosy reading den with cushions in a corner, or a sheet draped over chairs to make a tent; read a story or chapter and then act it out together.

We hope you enjoyed World Book Day 2021, and we look forward to sharing more ideas - and more brilliant stories - next year!