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‘Reading for pleasure is more important to a child’s educational achievement than their family’s wealth or social class’ Source: Reading for change, OECD, 2002

Idea Store for children

The Idea Store Pledge All children will sign the Idea Store Pledge when they join:

• I will treat other users with respect and care • I will walk, not run; I will talk, not shout • I will look after Idea Store books and computers • I will bring my books back when I’ve finished them For the parent: I will look after my child in the Idea Store and I will ensure that my child keeps the pledge. For Idea Stores: We will provide an enjoying and enriching experience for children and parents.

READING F OR F UN CHANGES LIV ES We all know how important reading is, but did you know how important it is that children enjoy their reading?

* was the biggest single determinant, taking all other factors into account,

The 2002 OECD report demonstrated that reading for pleasure at age 11 including parental income, in a child’s future success in education.

Idea Store we love books and stories and are determined that all * In children in Tower Hamlets grow up to enjoy reading. That’s not just because it will bring them success – but because reading is one of the greatest sources of happiness in life.

* So, we’re delighted to introduce our new programme for children which has reading at its heart.

STORY TIME Every day Monday to Saturday at 10:30am For babies and children up to 5 years old Have fun and give your child a head start. Young children who are read to every day get on better and do well, in a wide range of subjects, when they get to school.

Idea Stores have FREE Family Learning courses

My baby and I really like the children’s section - it’s great for the babies to crawl around and discover new books and meet other children Parent

Overall the library has been an amazing help as I am in temporary accommodation (bed-sit). My 1 yr. old son has a great time being able to play freely and safely. Also it’s such a help being able to use the computer for free. Parent

Idea Stores give your child a head start

STORY TIME BOOK CLUB Take home books to read and get your story time book club card stamped. When the card is full your child will get a certificate. Collect all eight!

‘Children who are read to every day at three are likely to be flourishing in a wide range of subjects by the age of five.’ Research from London University Institute of Education

DADS’ CLUB Every Saturday morning at 11:15am For dads and children

Many dads never get time to share books with their children but Saturday mornings in Idea Stores are the perfect opportunity for this. Dads are great role models and children who see both their parents enjoying books are more likely to enjoy reading themselves ‘The most crucial thing for dads to understand is that if kids see their dads reading they’re more likely to enjoy it themselves. There is evidence that boys are slipping further behind girls in reading - and this emphasises how important it is that dads are positive role models to their sons as well as their daughters when it comes to reading.’ Booktrust 2012

‘There is ample evidence that parents who promote reading as a valuable and worthwhile activity have children who are motivated to read for pleasure’ National Literacy Trust

I am a single father to a 16 month old daughter with health problems and developmental delay. I find the song/story sessions every morning a very useful resource to help socialise her and particularly the Dads’ club on Saturday mornings Dad


Every Saturday afternoon at 2:15pm For everyone

Everyone is welcome at this shared reading group. This is an opportunity for families to read together and share stories in a supportive, friendly environment. You can meet new families and make new friends. Children need to be of a reading age.

‘Comparing children with the same family income, parental characteristics and home environments, a child taken to the library on a monthly basis from ages three to five is two and a half months ahead of an equivalent child at age five who did not visit the library so frequently.’ Sutton Trust

We come every Saturday and always have a great time! It’s such a great activity for young families. Please keep doing it! Parent

READING ALOUD Every day Monday to Friday at 3:30pm For children up to 11

Relax after school with refreshments and a story in Idea Stores. Close your eyes and get carried away into another world.


Children who choose the books they read usually read more books and spend more time reading. Independent reading increases both vocabulary and reading fluency. Idea Store staff support children in choosing their own books and give children strategies for comparing and contrasting books

You’re in charge whether you want to re-read old favourites or want to try out something new, you can choose any book you like!

BOYS’ BOOK CLUB Every Monday at 4:00pm For boys up to 11

A club especially for boys to get together and share their reading experiences, explore a range of reading materials and media, and talk about anything that interests them. Snacks and drinks provided.

Look out for quizzes and prizes – and maybe a penalty shoot out...

Idea Stores have hundreds of thousands of books – and help with choosing books

Idea Stores are open at weekends. Idea Stores in Whitechapel, Bow, Chrisp Street and Canary Wharf are open on Sundays

GIRLS’ BOOK CLUB Every Tuesday at 4:00pm For girls up to 11

This club is especially for girls to get together to have fun with reading. Share your favourite reading – and find out about something new. Snacks and drinks provided.

Let’s hear it for the girls! Look out for quizzes and prizes!

T he Idea Store provides 1 to 1 reading support.

The ‘Reading Buddy’ scheme brings volunteers of all ages into Idea Stores to listen to children reading - please book a time at any Idea Store or Library

{code club} Every Wednesday at 4:00pm For everyone interested in computers and what they can do. Learn how to programme your own interactive stories, games and animations.


This club gives my child the opportunity to enjoy using computers in a safe environment with their friends Parent


TEENAGE CLUB Every Thursday at 4:00pm For over 12s only Create your own space, meet new people, get skills and inspire others. Idea Store staff will help you make a place especially for you.

Teenagers: there are lots of volunteering opportunities in Idea Stores. Enhance your CV, meet new friends and have fun at the same time. See our website for details (ideastore.

DID YOU KNOW? Your Idea Store membership card gives you access to a wide range of resources including encyclopaedias, driving test simulation, careers advice and law. The range is greater than at any school in the borough. You can use this in store or at home

really like the “ We activities the library puts on like the Art Club and the Summer Reading Challenge Moimin - age 6

like all of the “ IHorrid Henry Books Madeline - age 6

love having so “ We many books to read and computers to use Taha - aged 5 and Enaiya - age 8

“ The library has lots of good

books to read, lots of computers to use and the Summer Reading Challenge to do in the holidays ” Islam - age 10

“ Great place for parents to bring children, for children to access books and learn how to use the computers Abdul – Dad

“ I like coming here because

there are lots of stories and ” it’s colourful and everyone is friendly. My favourite book is Matilda by Roald Dahl ” What I love about Idea Store Whitechapel is... Tracy - age 8

like reading books, “ Iespecially adventure

“ The Creepy House and I really like the volunteers Sumaya - age 7 ”the computer and reading the Playing on “ cartoon books Ihsan - age 6 ” books like the Tom Gates The really good “ series Tasin - age 9 ”

books and science. I would like to know more facts Nahom - age 9 The library has lots of good books that I love to read Sumayah - age 5

like coming here “ Ibecause I like reading books


HOMEWORK CLUB Every Friday at 4:00pm For anyone who’s just been given some homework to do

Our staff will help you to find the answers. We use Britannica Online, which supports the curriculum for younger children and older students, as well as a host of other online and printed resources.

ART CLUB Every Sunday at 2:15pm at Idea Stores in Bow, Canary Wharf, Chrisp Street and Whitechapel For children between 6-12 years

In this weekly session we explore art and art-based techniques, find out about famous artists and look at how illustrations complement and enhance a story.

Explore your creative side

SUMMER READING CHALLENGE Every year, in partnership with the Reading Agency, we run the Summer Reading Challenge for children aged 4-11. Children are challenged to choose and read six books over the summer holidays and get to participate in a range of exciting activities. There is a different theme every year.

Taking part helps prevent the ‘summer reading dip’ in achievement when children without a book or reading opportunities at home over the long summer break from school traditionally lose ground in their reading. Thousands of children take part in the Summer Reading Challenge every year, winning prizes along the way. All children who finish the challenge are awarded a medal and are given a certificate at school.

We also run a smaller Winter Reading Challenge, which starts at the end of the autumn term and runs into the holidays

Summer Reading Challenge volunteers We’re proud that teenagers from secondary schools all over Tower Hamlets volunteer in Idea Stores and libraries every summer to help younger children with the challenge 

Children’s Programme Monday

Tuesday Wednesday Thursday

10:30am Storytime Storytime








Dads’ Club


Family Reading Group


Reading Aloud

Reading Aloud

Reading Aloud


Boys’ Book Club

Girls’ Book Club

Code Club

Reading Aloud

Teenage Club


Art Club

Reading Aloud

Homework Club

*Please note Art Club will only take place in Idea Store Bow, Canary Wharf, Chrisp Street and Whitechapel

Addresses Idea Store Bow

1 Gladstone Place Roman Road, E3 5ES 020 7364 4332

Idea Store Watney Market 260 Commercial Road Shadwell, E1 2FB 020 7364 4332

Cubitt Town Library Strattondale Street Isle of Dogs, E14 3HG 020 7987 3152

Bow Church



Fully accessible

Fully accessible

No accessible toilets

Idea Store Canary Wharf Churchill Place Canary Wharf, E14 5RB 020 7364 4332

Idea Store Whitechapel 321 Whitechapel Road Whitechapel, E1 1BU 020 7364 4332

Canary Wharf


Fully accessible

Fully accessible

Idea Store Chrisp Street

1 Vesey Path East India Dock Road, E14 6BT 020 7364 4332

Bethnal Green Library Cambridge Heath Road E2 0HL 020 7364 3492/ 3493

All Saints

Bethnal Green

Fully accessible

Fully accessible

For more information about any of our events just ask at the helpdesk, call 020 7364 4332 or visit

Idea Store Children's Offer  

Activities for Children in Idea Stores