Castle Hotel Bedtime Story Competition Print

‘‘No tech after teatime!’’

 New research out today reveals that more than half of parents (55%) ban tech before bedtime in favour of traditional bedtime stories, with a ‘tech black out’ sweeping the nation at 4.41pm.

Confirming that the bedtime story continues to top parents’ lists of ‘must-haves’ for their child’s increasingly busy lives, 67% say it is still one of the most important parts of the day; twice as important as using technology for educational purposes (34%) and even more valuable than completing extra homework (31%).

The LEGOLAND Windsor Resort, the nation’s favourite family theme park, asked 2,000 parents with children between the ages of one and 12 about their story-telling habits to mark the opening of its new Castle Hotel and to launch its nationwide children’s bedtime story writing competition. The winner will see their tale published as a real-life book and placed in every room of the hotel when it opens its doors this July.

With over a third of parents believing too much tech can harm their child’s sociability (38%), the study revealed that parents allow their children to spend 71 minutes of their spare time gaming and surfing the net. Two thirds (69%) of tech savvy parents forbid IPads at the dinner table and 25% completely ban smart technology from the bedroom, quashing concerns that kids now spend too long in front of screens.

The LEGOLAND Castle Hotel’s lead creative, Lily-Ann Bedder, comments: ‘‘Creating a magical bedtime experience for our guests was central to our plans for the LEGOLAND Castle Hotel. We put ourselves in the shoes of children and dreamt big to come up with the designs!’’

“The bedtime stories read by parents up and down the country every night help spark the imagination and creativity of children, and that’s exactly what we want to achieve with our hotel’s magical medieval theme. We can’t wait get a glimpse into the wonderful imagination of all the children who enter our bedtime story competition and we look forward to seeing the winning tale and its author in the hotel.’’

Top 10 things parents do when reading bedtime stories to their children:

1. Comical voices and noisy sounds (56%)

2. Improvise or make it up (28%)

3. Get their child to fill in the blanks (26%)

4. Use toys as props (19%)

5. Team up with a co-parent (14%)

6. Completely change the ending (13%)

7. Fall asleep occasionally (11%)

8. Make one of their children read to the other one, so they can have a break (10%)

9. Secretly skip pages to finish it quicker (10%)

10. Make themselves the hero of the story (9%)

The research revealed that a quarter of parents (25%) read to their child single every night, spending on average 7,300 minutes a year reciting stories in a bid bond with their child (70%); improve their reading

skills at school (56%); and even help secure their kids a better future career (14%). Other reasons for regularly reading bedtime stories include wanting to improve their child’s vocabulary skills (54%) and honing creativity (51%), with 47% of literary-lovers using the time as a good opportunity to relax and catch up on books they missed out on as children.

According to the study, 60% of parents believe being read to in their own youth has helped improve their imagination, with over a third believing it has made them a better parent (43%). One in five of those who were read to every night now earn over 50k, and almost a quarter (23%) hold a PHD.

Uncovering the real habits of bedtime storytelling, the research also saw 11% of parents confess to occasionally falling asleep during a story, whilst 10% admitted to skipping pages to finish quicker and 9% even owned up to making themselves the hero of the story.

Dr Jessica Horst, Developmental Science at University of Sussex, comments: ‘‘Learning to be comfortable interacting with technology is important for kids, but it’s also important to have tech time in moderation. The LEGOLAND Windsor Resort’s research is encouraging as it shows most parents do have a good handle on balancing tech time with other activities.”

“Bedtime stories in particular are great, as stories tend to include more sophisticated words than children hear in conversation so they help children with their vocabulary. I’m hopeful this new research motivates parents to keep bedtime stories part of their family’s daily routine.’’

In an bid to get the nation reading more bedtime stories and to celebrate the opening of the LEGOLAND Castle Hotel, young LEGO fans are being given the exclusive chance to make their mark by creating the official bedtime story for the Castle Hotel, set in a magical world of fire breathing dragons and whimsical wizards.

Open to children aged 5-12 years old, the winner’s story will take pride of place in each room of the Castle Hotel. The winner and their family will also be among the first to stay at the new hotel when it opens in July.

Find out more, enter the ‘Castle Hotel’ bedtime story competition and book a stay at https://www.legoland.co.uk/legoland-hotel/castle-hotel/bedtime-story-competition/

This competition is subject to terms and conditions which are available here: https://www.legoland.co.uk/tickets-and-passes/terms-and-conditions/competitions/

ENDS

Media Enquiries

For more information contact the LEGOLAND PR team at Clarion Communications: legoland@clarioncomms.co.uk / 020 7479 0910

FACTBOX

  • Hotel opens 1 July 2017
  • Themed family rooms (2 adults/ 2 children) available from £572
  • Hotel price includes breakfast and Park tickets for two days plus early access to the park, free refillable drink vessels for the children, LEGO gifts and collectables.
  • Book here: https://www.legolandholidays.co.uk/legoland-windsor-hotels/legoland-castle-hotel.html

NOTE TO EDITORS

  • LEGO, the LEGO logo, the Brick and Knob configurations and LEGOLAND are trademarks of the LEGO Group. (c) 2016 The LEGO Group.
  • The LEGOLAND® Windsor Resort is a unique family theme park where children aged 2 -12 can take to the road, soar through the skies and sail the seas in complete safety. It has over 55 interactive rides, attractions, live shows, building workshops and driving schools, not to mention a staggering 80 million LEGO® bricks, all set in 150 acres of beautiful parkland.
  • There are five other LEGOLAND® parks in the world – LEGOLAND® Billund in Denmark, LEGOLAND® California in the U.S.A, LEGOLAND® Florida, LEGOLAND® Deutschland in Germany and LEGOLAND® Malaysia.
  • MERLIN ENTERTAINMENTS plc is the leading name in location-based, family entertainment. Europe’s Number 1 and the world’s second-largest visitor attraction operator, Merlin now operates 111 attractions, 12 hotels/4 holiday villages in 23 countries and across 4 continents. The company aims to deliver memorable and rewarding experiences to its almost 63 million visitors worldwide, through its iconic global and local brands, and the commitment and passion of its managers and c26,000 employees (peak season).
  • Among Merlin’s attractions are - SEA LIFE, Madame Tussauds, LEGOLAND, DreamWorks Tours SHREK’s Adventure, The London Eye, Dungeons, Gardaland, LEGOLAND Discovery Centres, Alton Towers Resort, Warwick Castle, THORPE PARK Resort, Blackpool Tower, Heide Park Resort, Sydney Tower Eye and SKYWALK. All brands which are distinctive, challenging and innovative – and which have great potential for growth in the future. Visit www.merlinentertainments.biz for more information.