Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Train Up Tuesday: The Rewards of Reading

I hope that your summer is off to a great start! Reading any great books with the kids yet? Like we mentioned 2 weeks ago, summer time provides great opportunities for reading because of the time available and because the library and other programs offer various incentives for reading. Plus, it gives a good reason to stay in the cool indoors, by the pool, or in the shade if it is as hot where you are as it is where I am!

There are SOOOOOooooo many reward programs out there that I couldn’t begin to cover them all. Be sure to check out your local library, bookstores (both chain and independent), restaurants, and even some banks.

Here are a few that I have come across:

Barnes and Noble, as usual, has their summer reading program kicked off (May through early September 2010) in the form of a Passport. Download the form, tracking which books you read (and places you “visit” in each book). After 8 books, return the form to a B&N bookstore to choose a free book from the list. Also, participants are entered to win a autographed copy of complete set of The 39 Clues books. There are also parent/child activities you can download on this site.

Scholastic not only has several helpful articles and reading lists to help parents encourage their young readers, but the also have a summer reading challenge for 3-7 and 7 and up. The challenge for 7 and up readers involves logging minutes online to help their schools break the “world record”. The top 20 schools will be recognized in a “Scholastic Book of World Records”. The site also has other interactive opportunities for both age groups.

In addition to other rewards programs throughout the year, Chuck E. Cheese has a new “reading rewards” program. If kids read everyday for 2 weeks, they earn 10 tokens (with a pizza purchase).

Pizza Hut sponsors a Book It program for ages K-6 with readers earning a chance to be entered into a prize drawing. Check them out for more details:

Even Pottery Barn Kids has a special offer for kids who attend their bookclub (Tuesdays)!

In the northeastern part of the country, TD Bank has reward of $10 if young readers complete 10 books.

Some parts of the country (mostly the west/mid-west) offer a $3 gift card through Half Priced Books for each week that children 14 and under read for at least 15 minutes a day (good through July 31, 2010)!

You don’t have to plug into a reading program to reward reading, however. Reading should be its own reward. It enhances imaginations, takes you to other places, develops vocabulary and a world of other ideas and opportunities. However, if that isn’t motivation enough, come up with your own motivators. Be involved in reading with your child (if they will let you). Find or create activities based on stories that they are reading and love. Scholastic has a few good articles you may want to consider, especially this one.

If you have any ideas that you are using or have come across, please share them with us!

Happy reading!

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