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Child Poverty Rates Soar – Topical Tuesdays Activities from First News  

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The number of children living in the deepest form of poverty has almost tripled in just five years. That’s one of the findings of the annual UK poverty report by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF). Overall, the JRF found that around one-in-five people (22%) in the UK lived in poverty in 2021/22, but children are more at risk.


Tragic though it undoubtedly is for those affected, is poverty really our problem? Do we really need to spend public money to support families? Shouldn’t this be where charities step in to help? Or do you think that poverty, especially childhood poverty, is something the government should end as a priority? Isn’t it terrible that the UK, as one of the wealthiest countries in the world, is in this position? Are we letting down some of the most vulnerable people in our communities? What do you think?

Writing skills

Write a letter to an extremely rich person (real or imagined), trying to persuade them to share more of their wealth with the needy. Think what techniques might be most successful for inspiring greater generosity. For example, will you use flattery, reason or an appeal to their conscience? Don’t forget to use the conventions of a letter.


Write an acrostic poem where the first letter of each line spells out the word POVERTY as you read downwards. Focus on selecting the best possible words to create the impact you want to have on the reader.


Research the etymology (the origins of the word) of ‘poverty’. Which language(s) does it come from? Can you list any other words that share the same origins?

What is First News?

To find out more about how First News could help your school unlock the power of news-based learning, through high quality, weekly resources alongside the print and digital newspaper, visit the First News Education website.

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