The end of distance learning has given way to SUMMER, which means its time to explore free summer reading programs to encourage kids to keep reading all summer long. While a few programs have been affected by COVID with locations still closed, many of our favorites are back for 2020 summer reading programs. The summer reading programs are a fun incentive to keep reading to earn free books, free food, money and other prizes.
Summer reading programs have become so much a part of our summers that my kids can’t wait to sign up for these programs every year. My oldest daughter gives thanks the Barnes and Noble program and the DOGO Books program for introducing her to some of her favorite book series including Keeper of the Lost Cities and The School for Good and Evil. My kids are especially excited that Book It is back with free Pizza Hut Pizzas. They love to “pay” for dinner with their rewards certificate. Which summer reading program are your kids most excited about?
2020 Free Summer Reading Programs
- Barnes and Noble’s Summer Reading – This remains our favorite summer reading program! Through August 31, 2020, have your kids read any 8 books and record them in the Barnes & Noble Summer Reading Journal (available online HERE). Once they complete the journal, they can take it back to the store to pick a free book from the list at the back of the journal. Note – this summer reading program includes TEENS and ADULTS, but only kids grades 1-6 earn a prize! FREE BOOK!
- Book It – Book It is back! I am super excited because Book It has returned to its roots this summer to offer free Pizza Hut personal pan pizzas for readers! Enroll in the first-ever Camp Book It and track your kid’s reading progress on the dashboard. FREE PIZZA!
- DOGOBooks Summer Reading Program – We discovered DOGOBooks two summers ago, and it quickly became one of my daughter’s favorite websites year-round. Book reviews for kids by kids encourages young readers to share their thoughts on the books they read. Kids are invited to read books and share their reviews of the books. The top 10 reviewers will win a book prize pack, the next 25 top reviewers will win a $10 gift card. FREE BOOKS.
- TD Bank Summer Reading Program – From June 1 – August 31, 2019, 10 books = $10! One your kids read 10 books have them fill out the form, take it to your 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.) $10 cash!
- Amazon Bookstores Summer Reading Challenge – When students K-8 read any 8 books and turn in their list by September 2, 2020, they will earn a Star Reader Certificate, which is good for $1 off any book It looks like you have to turn in the list to one of the Amazon retail or pop-up stores, so it appears to only be available in certain areas. Check the website for details. $1 off coupon!
- Chuck E. Cheese’s Reading Rewards Calendar – Through December 31, 2020, Chuck E. Cheese will reward kids for good behavior with its calendars. Download a Reading Rewards Calendar and your kiddo can mark off each day he/she reads. When the calendar is full, two weeks, turn it into your local Chuck E. Cheese for 10 free game tokens. Bonus, this can be done again and again. (PS – there are other reward calendars too.) 10 FREE GAME TOKENS!
- Books A Million – Read any four books on the summer reading adventure section this summer, write about the books in your log HERE and return to your local BAM for a free Dog Man baseball hat (while supplies last). FREE BASEBALL HAT!
- Reading With The Rays – Florida baseball fans can earn two free tickets to a Tampa Bay Rays game by reading. Log your hours and the form HERE and read at least 24 hours this summer to your tickets. TWO FREE BASEBALL TICKETS.
- LifeWay Summer Reading Program – Through August 31, 2020 can read six books and memorize six Scripture verses. Once you have filled out the journal (available in July), complete the form to receive your prize – a free devotional book. FREE BOOK!
- Scholastic’s Summer Read-a-Palooza – Through September 4, 2020, kids can use their reading days to help unlock a donation of 100,000 print books from Scholastic distributed by United Way to kids in areas with limited or no access to books. For every two days in a row that kids track their reading streaks, Scholastic will donate six books. Kids will also full books, live events, and games in a safe community for readers via Scholastic Homebase. HELP DONATE BOOKS!
- Half Price Books Feed Your Brain – The Half Price Books summer reading program has gone digital. In June and July, kids 14 can share their summer reading log HERE with @halfpricebooks and #feedyourbrain on Twitter and Instagram for a chance to earn weekly prices (no word on what the prizes are). Weekly Prizes Price Bucks!
- HEB Grocery Stores’, HE Buddy Summer Reading Club – Read any 10 books and then mail back the form by October 1 to a t-shirt. FYI – valid only for Texas residents. Free t-shirt!
- Reading Rewards – Customize a reading incentive program just for your kids with Reading Rewards. This site makes it easy (and free) to set up your own reading goals and allow your kids to “buy” rewards in the reward store created by you. Ideas include movie night, a trip to the dollar store, a sleepover with friends – anything you can think up. DIY PRIZES!
- Sync Summer Reading Program for Teens – Here’s a summer reading program made especially for teens (13+) that will get them two free audiobooks each week from April 25 – July 29, 2020.
- Local libraries – Most local libraries have some kind of summer reading program often with goodie bags from local merchants. Check your local library for more details.
More Summer Ideas
Help your kids keep track of their summer reading with this free printable summer reading log.
Set screen time rules for summer with this Summer Screen Time Rules checklist printable. My kids love having a loose schedule they can be in charge of to play out their day.
Plus keep your kids busy this summer with these 15 Free Summer Activities For Kids.