Friday, July 3, 2015

Friday Cuteness: Or Fun Things In My Inbox (3)

I thought this was neat, and since summer's coming up, and I like the idea of this feature, I'd share it!

FAVORITE CHILDREN'S AUTHORS COME TOGETHER TO GET KIDS READING THIS SUMMER

NEW YORK – May 4, 2015 – Recent research from The Kids & Family Reading Report indicates that 91% of kids say that their favorite books are the ones they picked out themselves - and summer is the perfect time for those fun books kids choose themselves. To encourage kids to “Power Up and Read” throughout the summer, 13 favorite children’s authors have written original short stories that kids can unlock as rewards in this year’s Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge. This free summer reading program, created by Scholastic and powered by Energizer, encourages kids around the world to log the minutes they spend reading in order to unlock more stories, earn rewards, and help set a new world record for minutes read – seeking to top the 304,749,681 minutes read in summer 2014. Children and families can sign up for the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge starting today at www.scholastic.com/summer.

The top children’s authors participating include: Blue Balliett, Patrik Henry Bass, Varian Johnson, Gordon Korman, Michael Northtrop, Maggie Stiefvater and Jackson Pierce, Roland Smith, R.L. Stine, Tui T. Sutherland, Lauren Tarshis, Wendy Wan-Long Shang and Jude Watson. Each of the authors has written a unique short story using the same opening sentence which is, “I glanced over my shoulder to make sure that no one had followed me into the shadowy library, then took a deep breath and opened the glowing book…”

“We know that summer is the ideal time for kids to discover the power and joy of reading,” said Maggie McGuire, VP Scholastic Kids & Parents Online. “The Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge creates an environment where kids are encouraged to choose their own books and read all summer, setting kids up to succeed when returning to school in the fall.”

"I am a big believer in the power of choice when it comes to reading. In some cases, this freedom takes the pressure off reading, allowing a book to ‘just be a book.’ Other times, it allows readers to choose a book that serves as a mirror of their world or a window to a different perspective—or both! Whatever the reason, the power to choose gets us all reading, and the more we read, the more we grow," said acclaimed author Varian Johnson, one of the featured authors in this year’s Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge.

SUMMER READING FOR KIDS:

  • Ultimate goal of setting a new 2015 reading world record: Students read and log minutes, earn digital badges and rewards, and help set a new world record for summer reading
  • Read along with original short stories: Each original short story has a “read along” audio component, inviting children of all ages and reading levels to enjoy these engaging stories.
  • Dynamic creative writing game: Students can play a new “Innovation Machine” story starter game, powered by Energizer. This game encourages kids to create a one-of-a-kind story with fun story starters and wacky vocabulary combinations and enter into a contest to win prizes. Twelve winners will each receive a set of 12 signed books from the participating authors.

SUMMER READING FOR PARENTS:

  • Free daily tips: Parents can find something every day on the new “daily digest” with articles and tips from Scholastic Parents Channel experts at http://www.scholastic.com/parents/summer.
  • 2015 summer book list: Curated by Scholastic experts, this list features books for children in Pre-K through Young Adults.
  • Weekly sweepstakes: Parents can enter to win a “Power Up & Read prize pack,” including a Scholastic tote bag, a copy of Reading Unbound by Jeffrey Wilhelm and Michael Smith, $10 gift certificate to Scholastic Store Online, Energizer® brand batteries, Scholastic books and more.

SUMMER READING FOR EDUCATORS:

  • Grand prize for top school: The top elementary school that logs the most minutes this summer will win a visit from bestselling author Michael Northrop and the top middle school that logs the most minutes will win a visit from bestselling author Varian Johnson.
  • Classroom library sweepstakes: Educators who pre-register their students before June 30th, 2015 will be entered to win a free classroom library of 50 books.
  • Free summer reading tools: Educators can track their students reading minutes through the “Educator Dashboard” and their school’s progress on a virtual map, send automated emails to parents and access bi-lingual resources and printables.

For more information about the Scholastic Summer Challenge, please visit http://mediaroom.scholastic.com/SummerReadingChallenge.

SUMMER READING STATISTICS:

  • Teachers spend four to six weeks re-teaching materials students because of the “summer slide – the learning losses which can occur when school is not in session.
  • Children who read four or more books over the summer fare better on reading comprehension tests in the fall than their peers who read one or no books over the summer, regardless of ethnicity, socioeconomic level or previous achievement.
  • The majority of children of all ages (6-17) say when reading for fun, they want “books that make me laugh” (70%).

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You can read the full press release here, and the website for the Reading Challenge stuff is here. I think this is pretty cool - I read a lot of these authors as a kid, and those short stories look like a lot of fun, and I think I'll be checking a few out myself!

If you've got anything fun you think I'd like to feature, hit my contact button and email it to me!

Peace and cookies,
Laina

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