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A girl reading a book

Danish project worth EUR 2.6 million to strengthen children’s reading skills

Danish project worth EUR 2.6 million to strengthen children’s reading skills

The 4-year research project will be led by the Municipalities of Aarhus and Norddjurs, among others

On Friday 6 August, the Danish Municipality of Norddjurs revealed that approximately 15 percent of all 15-year-olds leave school with such weak reading skills that they face challenges when pursuing higher education. This alarming discovery has led several Danish organisations to work on finding ways of strengthening students’ reading skills.

Now, the Novo Nordisk Foundation has made a DKK 20 million (EUR 2,689,250) donation which will fund a 4-year research project on enhancing language skills. This research will be carried out by Aarhus University, TrygFonden’s Child Research Centre, the Danish Agency for Education and Quality (STUK) and the Municipalities of Aarhus and Norddjurs.

Parents play a crucial role in strengthening children’s reading skills

According to a press release by Norddjurs Municipality, recent research has found that students who read with their parents on a regular basis have better skills. In addition to this, their comprehension skills are strengthened when their parents ask them questions before, during, and after reading. In this way, they teach them how to read in an active manner.

Therefore, the 4-year project will assess how parents and teachers can best support the development of such skills in students. Councillor for Children and Young People in Aarhus Municipality Thomas Medom explained:

“With the research, we will gain more precise knowledge about which approaches and tools we can use to our advantage in the dialogue with parents, so that we create the best possible collaboration on the children's reading and writing.”

The organisations and bodies carrying out the research hope that the results of the study will be positive. More importantly, they seek to expand the project and implement it on a larger scale. In other words, if this initiative proves to be successful, it may be executed on a national level.

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