A newly-launched reading app, ‘Readingmate’ has been created to encourage children of all ages and abilities to develop good reading habits. Developed during the initial lockdown in 2020 by co-founders James and Hannah Rix, the first prototype was met with great feedback from parents wanting their children to read whilst schools were closed.
Head of English at a special educational needs and disabilities school in Norwich, Hannah discusses how the app has been designed to consider children of all abilities and backgrounds. She comments, “By being able to track progress and set reminders, the app helps to maintain routine and order.”
Through a rewarding system of attaining badges and reading streaks, the app will focus on the amount of time spent reading rather than ability of the number of books read. With an in-built calendar to help track progress, the Readingmate app makes it easy to turn reading into a lifelong habit.
Parents will also have access to a variety of research-based articles within the app that include activities and tips for reading. Hannah adds, “From talking with many of my parents I know this is so important for all parents but especially those who have children with SEND. I make sure that the activities suggested take into account the needs of every child. From my experience in mainstream and SEND education, falling in love with books and reading is completely unique to each individual and there’s no barrier to loving stories”.
For every book bought through Readingmate, 10p will go to fund reading programmes and for schools in the user’s area. Another 10p will go to a literary charity of the user’s choice which include Booktrust, Coram-Beanstalk, Real Action, The Literacy Trust and The Children’s Literacy Trust.
On the ‘Readingmate’ website there is also a Learning Hub for parents to access tools, advice and ideas. Going forward, James and Hannah plan to empower parents with resources to enable them to encourage positive reading habits in their children. James elaborates, “We want to support the much needed Literacy charities and schools with donations that come through book sales from our store and app. Our mission is to promote and improve the future prospects of all children, so eventually we would love to take Readingmate global to help more parents and children worldwide.”
“We want to put the love and enthusiasm back into reading. We believe reading is the pathway to a full and happy life but some children are lacking in confidence and passion towards it. Readingmate aims to shift this perception and make reading the better and more exciting option for all children”. – Readingmate co-founder, Hannah Rix.
James adds, “We believe that Readingmate can drive a reading revolution and want all children to share our love of reading. A genuine love and habit of reading can lead to a life filled with endless possibilities.”
The Readingmate app is free and available to download on both iOS and Android devices. For more information, click here.
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