The biggest drawback to homeschooling all year is that it does cut down on long, lazy hours of summer reading. But we do have extra time, and summer reading programs available encourage kids to spend some of that time reading when they’d rather be swimming or running through the neighborhood like little barbarians. Yes, we’re those neighbors.
When I was a kid, the only reading program we had was Pizza Hut’s Book It program. That program is still around, but kids these days have lots of options to pull in the loot, especially in summer.
My favorite is the Half Price Book program where kids up to 14 can get a voucher for $5 for reading 300 minutes a month. I also love that they include pre-readers and extend it to 14-year-olds. This is the only program my oldest can still participate in. They also win the award for best program name: Feed Your Brain!
At Barnes and Noble, kids 6 to 12 can choose a free book from a selection when they read (any) eight books.
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TD Bank cuts straight to the chase: read 10 books, get 10 bucks (in a new or existing savings account.)
And of course, don’t forget your local library. They put lots of time and effort into their reading programs, and signing up encourages you to get to the library often. Our local library is having a Lego Rocket Science themed kickoff. So of course, we’re out of town. Sigh.
Finally, Traveling Through the Pages is a great program that can be used in conjunction with any or all of these programs. It’s designed to help parents encourage their kids to read genres and topics outside their comfort zone. Frankly, I know a few adults who would benefit from “reading through the passport.” When you sign up, you get an email of printables. (If you don’t see the email right away, check your junk folder.) You print off a passport of different types of books to read (biography, science, story of a girl/boy your age, etc.) There are also award certificates and other things to print off, and parents can choose their own rewards. Since adults don’t get to join in the summer reading fun from the big corporations, I may do this one myself. I gotta think up some mom-themed awards.
Do your kids do summer reading programs? Are there any out there that I missed?