On the second to last day of school, Bubbles brought home some paperwork on local kids summer reading programs. I knew about some of the national ones – we’ve participated in those for a few years – but had no idea they did them at the local level.
I’m fortunate that Bubbles loves to read and needs no encouragement to do so. But I know not all kids feel the same and the fun and rewards from these free kids summer reading programs may be just the ticket to entice them into a break from screen time.
Below you’ll find 5 free kids summer reading programs, as well as a bonus idea. I’ve also shared a few of Bubbles’ current favorite kids books to help inspire ideas for your own summer reading lists, and have included a few affiliate links to help you track them down.
5 Free Kids Summer Reading Programs
Barnes & Noble Summer Reading for Kids – This is one we were looking forward to this year, as Bubbles was too young in the past. Start by printing out the journal (scroll down about mid-page). Then as your kids (grades 1-6) read any eight books between now and September 5th, fill out the journal with the appropriate information. When the journal is completed with all eight entries, your kids can choose a FREE book as their reward. Bubbles is currently trying to decide between Paw Patrol Chase’s Space Case and Plants vs. Zombies: Save Your Brains! (an I Can Read book).
Chuck E. Cheese – While not 100% limited to summer reading, Chuck E. Cheese does have a Reading Rewards Calendar you can download for your kiddos. After reading daily for two weeks take the completed calendar to your local Chuck E. Cheese for ten free tokens (with food purchase). They have reward calendars for a number of other things, as well.
Half Price Books – With the Feed Your Brain summer reading program from Half Price Books, kids age 14 and under can earn Bookworm Bucks to spend at HPB. Download the reading log and record how many minutes each day your child reads (or you read to them, if they’re not reading on their own yet). After they’ve read at least 300 minutes, return the form to your local HPB for the Bookworm Bucks. You can fill the form out once each in June and July.
Book It! Program – Throughout the year we’ve enjoyed a monthly free pizza while participating in the Pizza Hut Book It! program through Bubbles’ school. This summer the fun can continue with their free kids summer reading program with Candlewick Press. Download activity kits that pair with different book titles for some multi-sensory fun (like the Peg+Cat Pizza Problem activity kit).
TD Bank Summer Reading – If you live near a TD Bank location, your kids (grades K-5) can earn $10 deposited into a new or existing TD Simple Savings account. Just print out the summer reading form, read ten books, and record them on the form. Once it’s complete take it to a local TD Bank location for deposit.
As a bonus, I would suggest checking with your local library system to see what programs they may offer this summer. The form Bubbles’ brought home from school is for the SummerQuest program and kids will be able to earn prizes, including books and t-shirts. Plus there are a number of family and kids activities over the summer like movie nights, story time, hands-on activities, and more.