Reading in Uganda

Inspiring Readers Uganda phase one report

14th February 2019 | Publications

Between 2017 and 2018, in partnership with the National Library of Uganda (NLU) we launched the first phase of our Inspiring Readers school libraries programme in Uganda. Five public libraries and 25 schools took part and in October 2018, the first phase of the programme came to an end.  This paper presents the key learnings from the first phase of the programme.


Programme background

Inspiring Readers aims to increase opportunities for primary school children to read by bringing brand new books into the classrooms of under resourced schools across Africa. So far, the programme has launched in Cameroon, Kenya, Malawi Sierra Leone and Uganda. We hope to reach 250,000 primary school children through the programme by 2020. You can find out more about Inspiring Readers here.

Each participating school receives a Book Box Library filled with 1,250 brand new books including locally published titles. Two teachers and the head teacher from each participating school also attend training in library management and in how to bring books to life in the classroom. In addition, each school is linked to its local library which already has a Children’s Corner. The libraries act as hubs, providing teachers with additional support, extra books and the expertise of a professional librarian.

Key findings from phase one of Inspiring Readers in Uganda

– Pupils’ confidence and participation in class is growing as a result of access to inspiring books.

Teachers report that their pupils are more confident in class; answering more questions and being more willing to read out loud to the rest of the class.

– Children are reading for pleasure and this is improving their literacy skills.

As a result of having access to new story books in their Inspiring Readers libraries, pupils are starting to read for pleasure as well as study for exams. Some are borrowing story books to continue reading in their spare time and at home. Pupils are also noticing that their reading, comprehension and spelling are improving as a result of reading for pleasure.

– Teachers now feel better equipped to support children in reading and learning.

Teachers are using the books in their Inspiring Readers school libraries to bring lessons to life. This includes finding content for lessons, images to make learning more visual and find exercises for pupils to do. They are also using reading activities to engage pupils with books and reading and assess their progress.

Phase one of Inspiring Readers Uganda is generously funded by Thomas Cook Children’s Charity! We would like to thank them for their support!


Read the full report here

Click below to view the full Inspiring Readers report


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