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Out of four kids, one of them has struggled with learning to read. He is a cancer survivor, and his year of treatment may have something to do with his struggle, but that is something that we will never know for sure. I do know that for every ten words his brothers read, he has struggled to sound out one. This summer changed that for him. Between tutoring and consistency, he has worked harder than any six year old that I know. His perseverance has paid off, and he has increased two reading levels since school let out for the summer. He is now excited to read, and he wants to show off his new reading skills to anyone and everyone. I’m exceedingly proud of him!
For him, consistency has been key. Reading every day, several books a day, for seven days a week, has been important for him to pick up new words and reading skills. One parent asked me recently how I managed to find enough books for him to read. She stated that she could never find books for her child to have a variety to read. I was honestly surprised by this as we seem to have the exact opposite problem. We have read several books a day the entire summer, and every one has been different. I also spend little to no money on books for my kids. To accomplish this, I utilize 3 handy services or programs:
- The local library. Did you know that they can order any books in their library system? This expands the reading options to not only those offered at my specific local library, but also to many other libraries in my state.
- Book exchanges with parents and family
- Free book programs.
One current awesome free book program is the Kellogg’s Feeding Reading Program. In this program, consumers can get a FREE Penguin Random House book for an Eggo product purchase. Consumers can choose to have the book sent to their home or choose to donate it to their school. Kellogg’s has two goals with their Feeding Reading Program. First, they want to see all kids (like my son!) build confidence in their reading skills. Having a good variety of age appropriate books on hand is a great way to do this. Secondly, Kellogg’s wants everyone to start out their day with a Kellogg’s breakfast. Eggo Blueberry Waffles, Eggo Chocolatey Chip Waffles, Eggo Buttermilk Waffles, Eggo Cinnamon Toast Mini-Waffles, Eggo Homestyle Waffles, Eggo Strawberry Waffles, Nutri-Grain Blueberry Waffles, Nutri-Grain Whole Wheat Waffles, and Nutri-Grain Low-Fat Waffles are on-the-go, portable breakfast options.
Redeeming the free book is easy. First, head to a local Walmart and purchase an Eggo variety product by 9/30/19.
Head to Kellogg’s Family Rewards® at FeedingReading.com.
Upload a photo of your receipt. Each receipt must be submitted separately and within 30 days of purchase.
Receive an email shortly thereafter with the good news that there is a credit to redeem a Penguin Random House Book of your choice to keep or donate.
Easily choose your books and redeem your credits! Credits must be redeemed by 12/1/19. Limit of 10 books per participant. All of the books that we ordered, such as the one below, were 1 credit per book. There were several of the “Who Is?” books included in the selection. My daughter is a big fan of the “Who Is?” series.
Personally, I appreciate how the program allows recipients to choose to either encourage literacy in their own family by keeping the book or giving back to the community by donating the book. We plan on ordering a few selections for our household and donate a few, too!
Another favorite way that we keep our home book collection refreshed is with a book exchange. A book exchange is different than a book club. In a book club, the participants typically read the same book on the same schedule and meet either in person or virtually to discuss the book. In a book exchange, participants exchange different books, thus rotating a variety of books between them. Here are a few tips on starting a book exchange:
- Select a group of people that you know and see regularly. This could be a group of parents or moms at school, a group of fellow homeschool parents, a specific group of family members (like cousins), or a group within a church or community. Try to select a group with kids in the same age range so that exchanged books are relevant.
- Communicate your desire with this group to start a book exchange. With social media and texting, this can be done easily. Create a Facebook group or a group message. Let the group know your desires to encourage literacy, to save money on book purchases, and to discover new books for your kids that you may not have otherwise found!
- Once the book exchange group is created, select a day and time to meet to swap books. If the group is one that you see regularly, this can be done during a routine visit or meeting. For instance, if exchanging with other classroom parents, you may plan to meet 10 minutes before pick-up to swap books. If the kids would like to be active participants in their book choice, try to select a time where they can attend.
- Set guidelines and communicate these with the group. The guidelines do not have to be complicated, but they should include some basic rules, such as everyone who takes a book must bring a book and general boundaries on reading level and appropriate content.
Visit Kellogg’s Family Rewards® for full promotional information on the Feeding Reading Program.