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Pinterest Thursday-Our Summer Reading Program

10 Aug

We have always read a lot in our family, but this year we took it to a whole new level with our summer reading program!
It started out with a real bummer-our library system has always had a really fun reading program, but this year they changed everything, and it was a TOTAL dud.
Not to be discouraged, I created our OWN reading program!
I used this worksheet:
123 Homeschool 4 Me: FREE Bookshelf Summer Reading Logs
pin found here
I gave each of the kids a sheet (with the boys, I taped them on the wall in our dining room so that they wouldn’t get lost), and told them that every time they filled a shelf, they would get a book.  Each shelf had ten books on it, and to color in a book, the boys had to read a book to me/with me.  The Girlio had to read fifteen minutes.  I printed a stash of the sheets, and stored them where the kids could easily pull out another one as they needed it.
I had around ten books that we had picked up at a thrift store for prizes, but never used.  We started with those.  Once those were earned, each child got fifty cents when they filled a shelf.  Fifty cents is important, because that is how much the library sells books for at their end-of-summer party.  AND, if the kids read at least 250 books altogether, I promised to buy them Dragons Love Tacos 2.  They love those books.  🙂
Needless to say, a TON of books got read between June and July.  Over 350 books were colored in (after that, I kind of lost track of sheets!)
It was SO MUCH FUN to shop the sale at the library, and we came home with a ton of books-I think it was 33 or 34?  PLUS, I bought a few.  Anyway, it was A LOT!
A couple of hints if you do something like this-be prepared.  We shopped early (it was a very small space, and as soon as a few families start looking, it gets pretty cramped!)  We brought backpacks, and I had a list of books I created that contained books in series we had-so that we didn’t re-buy books we already had.  I also had a list of books I wanted to buy for our library.  It was like finding treasure when I found ones we had been wanting for a while!  🙂
I notified the kids that they could pick the books they wanted, but I was the final say on whether or not we would get them.  That way, I could consult my list, or veto any that I didn’t think they would enjoy/were too old for them/weren’t that great.  They knew this in advance, so there weren’t any arguments.  Being prepared was super helpful, and I would do it all again the exact same way.
Anyway, this really just kicked off the kids’ drive to read, and we are still reading a ton of books.  It worked so well, that we will probably do it again next year too-especially if they don’t change the library program back.  Even if they do change it back though, we will probably do their program, and then switch to this afterwards.
I should also mention, that before we do the library summer program, we complete the Barnes and Noble program too.  If you haven’t tried it, I highly recommend it.  They change it a little bit each year but essentially you read six or seven books, write something basic about it-title, author, etc., and you earn a free book.  The Girlio has done it for a few years now, but this was the first year The Boy was eligible (it starts in first grade.)  We finish the Barnes and Noble program in May, and then move on to the library one.
I was very pleased with all of our summer reading, and am already looking forward to doing it all again next year!
In the meantime, look for a post from me soon on how we are doing reading during the school year.
Whew-this was a very text-heavy post, so I am going to leave you with some pictures from the library end-of-summer party!
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Have a great day!

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