It’s not a hard to get my family to read. There are books on the tablets, the Kindle and even the cell phone The girls frequently ask for books from the library and even from book sales. It seems like no matter who you are in our household that there is most likely a book in your hand or within reach. But during the hot Houston summer months it sometimes gets a little more difficult to encourage reading because there are so many other things that the kids (okay and even yes mom and dad) want to do. To avoid summer brain drain I try to find really rewarding (in more ways than one!) summer reading programs.
American Girl: This summer reading program that starts May 1st and runs through Sept 3rd. Look for free downloads and in store events. The site says “Reading Challenge coming soon” so it’s important to visit to stay up to date on this one. I’m hoping for some in store coupons – hope springs eternal!
Pottery Barn Kids Summer Reading Challenge – May 16-August 26th, this reading program isn’t just for the kids but for the whole family! Families are invited invited to read each book with them at their FREE weekly story time. Kids will receive a prize after they finish reading all the books on their list! Contact your local store for more details.
Texas readers – be sure to check out the Baylor Alumni Association summer reading program developed especially for reading levels 4 yrs old to adult! No excuses for not finding a good book to read from this list. The Baylor Alumni Association has worked in partnership with the Institute of Reading Development to bring these popular programs to the service area since 1997.
Related content: 10 tips to encourage your child to read
Texas Summer Reading Program- In order to continue to provide cost-effective summer reading programs, the State Library has joined with the Collaborative Summer Library Program (CSLP) on behalf of libraries throughout Texas.
The 2013 program consist of an “underground” theme including:
- Dig Into Reading (Children’s and Early Literacy)
- Beneath the Surface (Teen)
- Groundbreaking Reads (Adult)
Showcase Cinemas Bookworm Wednesdays (select locations): Bring in a book report each Wednesday from July 10 – August 7, kids (unless you are six and under and then admission will be free) – which will be cost of admission! The films in include:
- July 10th – Yogi Bear
- July 17th – Ice Age: Continental Drift
- July 24th – Madagascar 3
- July 31st – The Lorax
- August 7th – Hotel Transylvania
Barnes & Noble- Here’s one program that’s really rewarding! Children grades 1-6 for can earn a free book for reading during the summer, Barnes & Noble is offering up a Summer Reading Program that rewards kids with a FREE book after they have read 8 books of their choice. Here’s how it works:
*Read any 8 books and record them in the Reading Journal found here.
*Take the completed Reading Journal to their local Barnes & Noble store between May 21st and September 3rd, 2013.
*Chose a FREE Book from the selection on the Reading Journal list at your local store.
I like FREE!
Half Price Books Summer Reading Program offers children 14 and under the chance to earn $5 in Half Price Books Back to School Bucks.
* Read for at least 15 minutes each day in the months of June and July, or have a grown up read to them.
* Download the reading log found here to record your child’s progress.
* Turn your reading log in to receive $5 in Half Price Books Back-to-School Bucks. The $5 discount card can then be applied to the pre-tax amount for a future purchase valid until 8/28/13. Limit one coupon per person, per visit. Go here for more details.
One of our favorites last year because the kids then took their books to the store, got store credit and bought even more books to read!
Chuck E. Cheese Summer reading program rewards your child. Here’s how it works.
*Each time your child reads for 2 weeks in a row, they will earn 10 FREE tokens at Chuck. E. Cheese!
* Print the form here to record.
* Valid through 12/31/13 at participating locations. Food purchase required for redemption. Limit 1 of any free token offer per child per day.
With the TD Bank Summer Reading Program kids can earn $10 to be deposited into their new or existing TD Bank Young Saver Account when they read 10 books. Here’s how it works:
- Read 10 books this summer.
- Print out the Summer Reading Form
- Write down the names of the books they’ve read
- Take the form to the nearest TD Bank
- Watch $10 be deposited into a new or existing Young Saver Account
Valid through September 30, 2013. Must be 18 years of age or younger to participate. Bring form of ID for child for new account opening. Go here for more details.
Who doesn’t like free money and showing your kids how to read and save too!
Scholastic’s Summer Challenge: Kids track their reading minutes by logging into their own account at Scholastic. Then with ther reading minutes they can enter to win various sweepstakes and win a variety of prize packs.
We first told you about the Junie B. Jones reading program in our Teacher Appreciation week round up over at our sister site Money Saving Parent. With the Junie B. Kids’ Reading club and get a free starter kit. The kit comes with the following:
- Free copy of June B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus
- Exclusive Activity Pages
- Membership ID Card
In addition to the above, you will receive updates about new books, activities and other events.
Sylvan’s Book Adventure Program: This program is for children in grades K-8. Your child searches online for books and then find them in the library (or bookstore) and reads them. Next they come back and take quiz about the book and are rewarded with prizes for their reading success! I like that this program helps with memory and comprehension too!
The H.E.B summer reading club is another family favorite since it’s a grocery story we visit just about every week so it’s a great reminder to get reading done!
H.E.B. Summer Reading Club: When your kids read 10 or more books, they can submit a form and select a prize to keep. Just fill out the form including the books your child has read (if your kids can’t read, you can just list the books you read to them) and mail to the address on the form! The form must be postmarked by October 1, 2013. – Honor system in place.
Your public library will be – if not already – offering summer reading programs and often fun filled summer activities. I know we have seen a clown, magician, musician, met Miss Texas, colored and created crafts. Be sure to look at your library calendar because those activities are not only fun and FREE – but a great excuse to get out of the heat and go get some more books.
Pizza Hut Book It! Program. This program has free reading adventure packs for parents to download, and activities activities, recipes and more for children to do that tie in to the books on the list. Enter your zip code and see if your local school has requested participation because they may be able to win free pizza with participation. Even if they don’t it’s still a fun filled reading program for the summer.
PBS Kids Summer Reading Challenge – While not officially announced there are still plenty of reading opportunities, ideas and activities (along with a whole lot more) located on the PBS.org website. My girls LOVE to play the games on there and watch videos. And, it makes learning fun for everyone.
- Reading any 10 books.
- Print the Summer Reading Challenge worksheet here and fill it out.
- Bring your completed Summer Reading Worksheet to any Borders before September 15 to receive a coupon for a free book valid on selected titles.
Now, the question is – where do we start?