Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Summer Reading Programs 2011

I love summer reading programs. They reward what we already do (read a lot) and remind us to track what we've read. I wish I had kept lists of the books I read when I was a kid.

We always participate in our local libraries' summer reading programs. This year, I started searching for additional summer reading programs. This is the list I've come up with so far.

  • Half-Price Books: Feed Your Brain - under 14 years old. Read 600 minutes during June & July and get a $5 gift card.
  • Barnes and Noble - 1st-6th graders. Read 8 books and chose 1 book (from a list) for free.
  • Borders - 12 and under. Read any 10 books and chose 1 book (from a list) for free.
  • Pottery Barn Kids - ages 10 and under. There is a reading list of picture books (Caldecott medals and honors) or early readers that must be completed. Prize is a free book.
  • Scholastic Summer Challenge - I can't find the age range this is for.
  • PBS Kids - I'm not sure what the program is exactly. 
  • Chuck E Cheese - This one seems to require a food purchase though, for only 10 tokens.
We also get to participate in the summer reading programs for the library of the county where we live and the county where my husband works. (I have library cards in both counties. Check your local regulations. Some counties allow you to use the libraries if you work there.)

I found out on Tuesday that our county now has an adult summer reading program, which I am very excited about. I need to clarify some of the details - like are only books from that library allowed? Adults are given a bingo sheet with various genres of books to read. The requirement is to write a brief review of each book read and have a staff member sign the review. Up to 10 reviews can be submitted for the raffle. Our library's program is only for the month of June. Most of the programs run through the end of July.

Monkey Georgia has signed up for 3 reading programs so far, and completed both libraries programs. (We have not turned in our forms yet, so she has not received prizes yet.)

On Saturday, we went to the Half-Price Books summer reading kick-off. It was more low-key than some kick-off parties I have seen, but low-key is her style. She sat on the floor in front of the storyteller, coloring and enjoying their snacks and listening to the stories. Monkey Georgia sat through storytime for an hour and a half! I was blown away that she sat there that long. (The party was about 2 hours long, and people came and went as they pleased. We were a little late, or I suspect Monkey Georgia would have stayed longer.) I'm not sure if it was the stories or the free access to glue sticks that kept her attention. Maybe a little of both?'s Freebies site has a list of summer reading programs also.

Do you know of any other summer reading programs available this summer?

Edited to Add: Most of the summer reading programs that I linked to here are open to children who do not read yet. The rules indicate that it is ok for parents to read to pre-literate children. If Monkey Georgia were reading to herself, I would consider letting her count the same books for each program. Since I am reading to her, we only count each book once, even if we read it more than once. These are my personal rules.

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