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International Literacy Day: Reading, Writing and More

Introduction

What does International Literacy Day mean? International literacy day was first celebrated in 1966 by the United Nations General Assembly to recognize the importance of literacy for international development. This year marks 66 years since this international observance began! International Literacy Day is coming up on September 8th, and it’s a perfect time to discuss international literacy day.

happy international literacy day

Why International Literacy Day matters

International Literacy Day is an important day that needs to be celebrated each year. It is a day that celebrates literacy and the need for increasing literacy rates in the world.

  • It also focuses on raising awareness about the challenges associated with illiteracy and how it impacts different aspects of a country’s social, economic, and political stability.

How International Literacy day started

International Literacy Day is observed every year on 8 September. It also marks the anniversary of the creation in 1995 of the International Conference on Adult Education (CONFINTEA), which UNESCO and UNEVOC jointly organize.

  • The first CONFINTEA meeting took place in Belgrade, Yugoslavia , from 23–27 September 1978. Subsequent sessions were held again in Belgrade (1982), Barcelona (1986) and Havana (1990).
  • Organizations such as UNESCO use this day as an opportunity to reach out to those who need literacy support, those who do not have access to regular classes, or those who are struggling with literacy skills.
  • By having events that highlight the importance of adult literacy programs, they can raise awareness about the work that needs to be done and encourage volunteers, teachers, and those who need support with their literacy skills to take part.
  • International Literacy Day is also an opportunity for students to learn more about what the organizations associated with this day do and how they help improve literacy rates around the world, not only in adults but also in children.
bookscase and colors pencils icons

International Literacy day themes

This year’s theme for International Literacy Day is: “Literacy for a human-centered recovery, Narrowing the digital divide.” The campaign aims to highlight how important it is to combine education – especially literacy – with environmental protection.

  • Children and families need access to clean water sources; we must teach them how protecting our environment will help us all better ourselves as social beings.
  • This campaign also focuses on the importance of building sustainable societies today and for generations to come.
  • International Literacy Day is a day that must be celebrated every year because it is important to recognize and encourage literacy programs worldwide.
  • This day can help different organizations focus their outreach efforts to raise awareness about the work they do.
  • It’s also an opportunity for all students to learn more about how education can change a person’s life and why it is important in helping us build a better society for all people.
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How to celebrate international literacy day

#1 Host a book fair at your library and offer free books for kids who come dressed as their favorite storybook character

#2 Give away free reading glasses at the library

#3 Organize a scavenger hunt around town with clues written on pieces of paper that say, “Find out what I am,” etc.)

#4 Host a “Scarecrow Decorating” contest

#5 Create Halloween-themed coloring pages and bookmarks to give out at the library

books and supplies pattern literacy icons

Summary

1. International Literacy Day is observed on September 8th

2. It’s a day to celebrate literacy and the importance of reading

3. The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) established this day in 1966

4. UNESCO promotes the observance by organizing events with governments, civil society groups, schools, libraries, and other organizations

5. It’s also an opportunity for people to reflect on their literacy practices and get involved in promoting literacy, among others

6. This year’s theme is ” Literacy for a human-centered recovery, Narrowing the digital divide. “

7. UNESCO is partnering with the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network to promote this year’s theme at a high-level side-event on September 8th

Conclusion

International Literacy Day is a great day to celebrate international literacy and take time for yourself. Make sure you have the chance to enjoy international literacy day before it’s gone! If you’re looking for International Literacy Day events in your area or resources that pertain to literacy, you can visit UNESCO’s website here.

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