Top secondary school students are choosing ‘easy’ books like David Walliams, study finds

Top secondary school students are choosing ‘easy’ books like David Walliams and failing to stretch themselves, study finds

Brightest readers at secondary school choosing ‘easy’ books below ability levelsOpting for Jeff Kinney’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid series and novels of David WalliamsReport found 16 out of 20 of most popular books were by Walliams and KinneyRenaissance UK analysed habits of more than 1.1m pupils in the UK and Ireland

The best readers at secondary school are failing to stretch themselves and choosing ‘easy’ books far below their ability levels, a major study has revealed.

It found the brightest are opting for ‘endless’ texts from Jeff Kinney’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid series and the novels of David Walliams including Gangsta Granny and Billionaire Boy.

These books are also popular among ‘struggling readers’ at secondary school as well as primary pupils from the age of seven onwards, according to the report by the education assessment provider Renaissance UK.

It found 16 out of 20 of the most popular books in secondary schools, among pupils up to the age of 16, are written by Kinney and Walliams.

David Walliams’ ‘The Ice Monster’ book signing at a Waterstones book store in Piccadilly in London in November 2018

University of Dundee academic Professor Keith Topping, who analysed the data for the study, said it was ‘rather depressing’ that pupils were reading so much by the two authors.

‘The other issue is that Kinney and Walliams seem to be making no effort to increase the difficulty of some of their books,’ he added.



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