Welcome to World of Stories
At Puffin, we believe that stories can inspire a child to feel that they can be, and do, anything.
However, not every child in the UK has access to books and stories. Libraries are suffering from a chronic lack of investment – 1 in 4 of schools serving the UK’s most disadvantaged communities do not have a school library. We created World of Stories in partnership with our friends at the UK’s leading literacy charity, the National Literacy Trust, in 2018.
World of Stories aims to address some of the key challenges facing reading for pleasure in schools where budget constraints often mean investing in school libraries and librarians and buying new books is not an option. Research shows that reading for pleasure improves children’s ability to read, write and progress at school, as well as having a positive impact on their mental wellbeing and empathy.
So far, we’ve worked with 534 primary schools, supporting them to transform their libraries and reading spaces into hubs of creativity and imagination.
Love of reading is one of the reasons I went into teaching . . . this has motivated me and reminded me of what's important.
What does World of Stories offer?
Each participating school receives for free:
400 brand new books from Puffin
From much-loved classics like Roald Dahl and Diary of a Wimpy Kid, to new voices.
100 books from our partner publishers
Including from Barrington Stoke, Lantana, and Knights Of.
For participants, delivered by the National Literacy Trust.
Introducing schools to the power of audiobooks to reach children who struggle to read.
To bring reading spaces in schools to life, including posters, bookmarks and bunting.
Which schools are eligible?
To make sure we’re targeting our support where it’s needed most, all schools taking part have a higher than average percentage of pupils receiving free school meals - which we use as a proxy for disadvantage.
In 2023/24, we are working in the following target areas:
- Black Country
- Essex (Basildon, Braintree, Harlow, Thurrock, Southend and Canvey Island)
- Lancashire (Preston, Fleetwood, Skelmersdale)
- County Durham (Bishop Auckland, Newton Aycliffe, Stanley, Crook, Chester-Le-Street)
- Portsmouth and Isle of Wight
Who is involved in the programme?
Participating schools receive a total of 100 books from the seven publishers, which include fiction, non-fiction, picture books, biographies, graphic novels and more.
World of Stories has made more of a difference than I could ever have imagined. Our Library Coordinator is constantly coming to me with new ideas and has already put many of them in place. There is a long queue outside the library most lunchtimes, with children waiting to borrow or swap their choice of the fantastic books we have been given, and the student librarians are enjoying running the system.
I am so grateful that we were chosen to take part.
Teacher at participating Essex school
Introducing our Ambassadors!
The Primary School Library Alliance was formed in November 2021 to address the lack of investment in UK primary school libraries. Début author Nazneen Ahmed Pathak, author and illustrator Jen Carney, plus duo Greg James and Chris Smith are our ambassadors for the 2023-24 academic year.
“The alliance is doing urgent, essential work to begin to change that, by working with hundreds of brilliant schools across the country, bringing story magic to children, book by book. We are so proud that our Puffin authors Nazneen, Jen, Greg and Chris will be lending their support and influential voices to such a vital endeavour, and I wish them all, and the kids, the best – and fun – this year."
Penguin Random House Children’s managing director Francesca Dow
Latest news from World of Stories
Real-life authors and illustrators will be streaming LIVE straight into classrooms around the country each term, to inspire a lifelong love of reading for your pupils
Pupils and teachers at Shirehampton Primary School in Bristol welcomed Her Majesty Queen Camilla today, Thursday 18 May 2023.
World of Stories 2023/24: applications now open!
Impact since 2018
Now the library is creative and full of adventure!