Once before, in an effort to increase participation in summer reading, we created a short promo video for summer reading. We had animoto style the state book award nominees as part of the promo. We planned to reward students who could provide evidence of reading with a Limo ride to a neighborhood book store, a giftcard to buy a book at a certain value, and lunch at the local pizza place. Students had to register to get in on the gig–and the registration was a promise/commitment/contract type agreement to read over the summer. The statement included a lot of ways to demonstrate they had read, including creating posters, book reports, participation in the schools reading blog, making podcasts, making videos, creating a diorama, and much more. The thing was not everyone likes to do book reports or take a test, so we had to have a wide variety of ways to show that the books had been read. There was even a choice of visiting the librarian and verbally telling about a book. Could kids cheat? Absolutely. But that is not necessarily something that could be checked. I’m sure we could have included foolproof ways to identify and eliminate the cheaters, but hopefully only the real readers signed on! I mean the prize was primarily getting a book to read, but in a special way. The field trip was an after school event too. Writing this has made me want to revisit this idea at school. Thanks for prompting my reflection again.
Recently I read about a couple of sites that can be created to mimic Facebook. These could be choices for students to show they have read as well. Creating a FB page for a book character would really be challenging if the book has not been read. (But truth be told, this could be a collaborative effort as well, and cheating could be done in this avenue as well.) See screenshots here below, and the images link to the sites that generated them:
What ideas can you share? How have you encouraged your kids to read over the summer?