My daughter has been doing summer reading programs since she was 6 months old. I am looking forward to doing it again this summer with one important distinction - she will be reading the books herself! There are a number of summer reading programs around and while we could use the same books for all of them, I am going to challenge her to read different books.
The Ann Arbor District Library has a great summer reading program. The program is available for listeners, readers, and adults. In the past, kids collect stamps for each 3 or 4 books they read and get a free book when they reach 10 books. The adults typically receive a fine forgiveness coupon or zoom lends coupon. The library will have a booth at Taste of Ann Arbor on Sunday to begin signups (Liberty St between Main and 4th). They will also have hula hoops, bubbles, spray paint mural, and more. Also, join AADL on Sunday, June 19 at Top of the Park for the Summer Reading Kickoff Concert by The Board of Education. If you do not live in the Ann Arbor Library area, check with your local library.
Borders has the Double Dog Dare Challenge Summer Reading program this year. Read any 10 books and record them on the form. Bring the form into any Borders and you will receive a free book (select titles). The free books include several level 1 and 2 readers and early chapter books as well as harder books for older children. They will have a kick-off event in stores on Saturday, June 4 from 2-4. This event is geared for children ages 8-12 and will celebrate the new summer movie Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer based on the book of the same name.
My daughter has redeemed her summer reading list from Borders for her free book. It was quite easy to redeem the book.
Barnes & Noble is also offering a summer reading program, Imagination's Destination. Children have to read 8 books of their choice and fill out a form. Then they can select one of the free books. The prizes are listed for grades 1-2, 3-4, or 5-6. But, several titles would be fine for preschoolers. The grades 1-2 books include early readers (up to level 2). I have been reading these books to my daughter since she was 3 as the stories were short and easy to understand. Actually, my daughter who is 5.5 reading prefers easy chapter books now, so we might actually go with a grades 3-4 book.
Scholastic offers reading logs to log minutes read. This is probably best for older children. The kids win digital prizes for hitting a reading goal each week. There are also games and other activities on the site. My daughter was thrilled to find Magic School Bus games and activities and also to learn that their is a Magic School Bus iPad App. The app is pricey ($7.99), so we have downloaded the lite version (free) to try it out before deciding whether we want to purchase it.
Chuck E Cheese does not have an official summer reading program, but they have rewards calendars for various achievements available all year to earn 10 free tokens. One of these is a Reading Rewards for two weeks. You could set the bar for what they need to do each day to earn their stamp.
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