10 Summer Reading Programs for Kids | FREE

For as long as I can remember, I have had my children read, daily. I was a voracious book reader as a child and really want all my children to love books as well. My son used to read two or three books at a time. My oldest daughter is not keen on books, which makes me sad; although she does love when I read to her. My youngest daughter is a lover of words, like me and it delights my heart.

Every summer, I select books for each of my children to read and we chat about the books and sometimes even have comprehension tests and book reports! Last summer, I created a list of books for my super smart son, but all the books were at college level and he really didn't enjoy any of the books. This summer I decided to select age-appropriate books . . . . and he read one book in two days! (I've learned my lesson)

This past week, the weather in Chicago has been full of rain and dark days. My kiddos have easily been able to fit in their mandatory reading time. It is so important to keep reading skills at level in the summer or, in my opinion, improve them!

10 Summer Reading Programs for Kids | FREE

A List of Summer Reading Programs for Kids That Give Free Books, Money and More

Here is an outline of five summer reading programs for the Chicago area to encourage our children to read all summer long!

FREE Summer Reading Rewards Programs 2017 for Kids

Barnes & Noble Summer Reading: “Imagination’s Destination”

Free book Barnes and Noble's Summer Reading Triathlon. This year they are celebrating 21st year of summer reading! From May 16 - September 5. Have your grade 1- 6 kids read any 8 books and record them in the Barnes & Noble Summer Reading Journal Once the journal is completed, simply take it back to any participating store to select a FREE book from the list at the back of the journal. You’ll find a downloadable version of the Summer Reading Journal online at BN.COM/summerreading

Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge:        “Take A Reading Adventure”

Chance to win prizes Scholastic's Summer Challenge - May 8 - September 8, kids can log summer reading minutes to earn digital prizes through ! Be a part of this! Log on and track your reading minutes. You can even check to see if the summer reading road trip bus in in your area.

Half Price Book: Feed Your Brain

Bookworm Bucks - Half Price Books Feed Your Brain - When kids reach 300 minutes of reading, they'll get claim their Bookworm Bucks on or before August 31, 2017 at Half Price Books.

TD Bank

$10 cash From June 1 - August 31-- 10 books = $10! Once your child reads 10 books, they simply fill out a form, take it to the nearest TD Bank and TD Bank will deposit $10 into their Young Saver Account. (Note, you will need to either have or open a Young Saver Account for this program.)

Sylvan Book Adventure

Redeem points for prizes - Sylvan Book Adventure - K-8 read books (7,000 titles to choose from), and then take a short quiz to earn points. The points can then be redeemed for prizes. Bonus, parents can monitor kids reading with online progress reports.

Pizza Hut Book It! Program

Book It - The summer Pizza Hut BookIt programs runs June – August during the summer your child can continue reading with BookIt printables. Plus parents will find summer reading list by grade.

Chuck E. Cheese’s Reading Rewards

10 free game tokens Chuck E Cheese's Reading Rewards Calendar - Through December 31, 2017. Chuck E. Cheese will reward kids for good behavior and reading with their calendars. Download a Reading Rewards Calendar(or any other calendar) and your kiddo can mark off each day he/she reads. When the calendar is full, turn it into your local Chuck E. Cheese for 10 free game tokens. Bonus, this can be done again and again.

Sync - For your Teens (13+)

SYNC is a free summer audiobook program for teens 13+.  This summer reading program runs thru August 16, 2017.   SYNC 2016 will give away 30 titles - two paired audiobook downloads a week!

Public Library Summer Programs

Be sure to check your local libraries areas as well.  Some of the best summer reading programs are in your area public libraries. Every public library has a different summer reading program but almost all of them have rewards and prizes for kids as well as fun events all summer long. Check with your local library to see what sort of summer reading program is offered! 

Summer Nature Explorer: Reading and Activity Program

Read books and play at Family Drop-In Activity sites and earn prizes! For details and to sign up, visit the Chicago Botanic Gardens, Lenhardt Library in the Regenstein Center. Children of all ages are welcome to participate. Program dates are June 3 - August 7.

BONUS: Six Flags Read To Success Summer Program

Read to Succeed is an exciting program that encourages students in grades K through 6 to read for fun. Students who complete six hours of recreational reading earn a free ticket to Six Flags! The program is available to teachers and schools at no cost to participate, and it's a great way to motivate kids to read.

How do you encourage your kids to read during the summer?