Mcdonald’s is giving out free Roald Dahl books to encourage children to read more

Danielle Fowler
Freelance Writer
McDonald’s stores in New Zealand are ditching toys in favour of books for the next six weeks [Photo: Getty]

Forget keeping your kids entertained with Happy Meal toys, as McDonald’s is trading them in for Roald Dahl books in its New Zealand stores with the hope of encouraging children to read more.

According to the NZ Herald, the surprising initiative was thought up after a 2016 survey from The Progress in International Reading Literacy Study discovered a decrease in literacy rates among primary school children.

For six weeks, the fast food chain will dish out 800,000 books by the world-famous author with Matilda, Wonderful Mr Willy Wonka and Fantabulous BFG making the line-up.

Forget the toy, McDonald’s is handing out books for the next six weeks [Photo: Getty]

Not only will each novel feature story extracts from the original titles by Dahl but will also include a selection of stickers and activities for kids to enjoy.

But it’s not the first time the fast food joint has handed out books instead of toys, as the project is part of the global Happy Meal Readers programme – an initiative which aims to encourage youngsters to read more.

“The Happy Meal Readers programme is all about helping parents to get their children to enjoy reading,” Jo Mitchell, director of marketing at McDonald’s New Zealand, announced.

“The Roald Dahl characters are ones that many parents will have enjoyed growing up, and it’s great to play a part in introducing them to a new generation.”

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