Summer Reading Programs

Many of us homeschoolers continue the learning process throughout the year; but summer reading programs can be a fun change for any child, whether they go to a public school, private school, or are homeschooled. Many organizations offer incentives for kids to read; the following are just a few that I have found.


Scholastic offers a great summer reading program. Parents register their kids, then can track their reading minutes. They even offer an app so you can track reading time on the go. Read the family participation guides for more information. Find reading resources, tips & tricks for reluctant readers and book lists here.

Book Adventure

Book Adventure takes the summer reading program a bit further; kids (or parents) can use their book finder app to search for a book to read. Search by genre, author or ISBN, or choose a topic that interests you. Book quizzes help reinforce what your child reads, and lets you know if they are understanding what they read. Points earned from these quizzes can be used to earn prizes. Your children will have a blast reading with the Book Adventure program!

Book It

The Book It Program has a variety of resources for parents to encourage their children to read throughout the summer. Perhaps the biggest part to inspire kids would be the summer reading sweepstakes. Children who read at least 5 books between June 15 & August 15 can enter to win a Diary of a Wimpy Kid prize package. Parents can also use their Activity Calendars to make reading FUN!

Barnes and Noble

The Barnes and Noble Summer Reading Program is simple and easy to use. Download their reading journal, read at least 8 books and bring the journal into a local store for a free book. There is a list by grade of what books can be chosen for the free prize. In addition to this, the website also has lists of recommended reading books by age.

Half Price Books

The Half Price Books Summer Reading Program allows children aged 14 and under a chance to earn a $5 reading reward. All they have to do is read at least 15 minutes a day for a month, then turn in their reading log to a local store. As an added incentive, one top reader will be chosen each month to win a $20 gift certificate.

Chuck E. Cheese

Yes, Chuck E. Cheese has a summer reading program! If you read every day for 2 weeks, you get 10 credits. Of course, with their program, there is a catch; you’ll get the 10 free game credits, but you can’t use them unless you purchase food.

Pottery Barn Kids

I was a little surprised to learn that Pottery Barn Kids was offering a summer reading challenge, but it sounds really neat. First, you download the book list; then you track your child’s progress using their progress tracker. At the end of the summer, print out a certificate of completion, then bring your winning reader to the local store for their free book! They can also be entered to win a backpack full of books.

Your Local Library

Don’t forget to check your local library! There are often lots of fun activities going on, some are social activities, some are reading challenges. Keep your child interested in learning and in books by making the library a frequent destination!