They may be called the lazy days of summer, but this time of year can be crazy busy: You're signing your kids up for summer camps, planning summer vacation, and, oh yeah — trying to avoid the summer slide (that slump in academic skills that kids tend to experience over the summer!). Luckily, the Scholastic Read-a-Palooza Summer Reading Challenge will help you with that last one. It's a free, educational program in which your kids can enter their reading minutes online to unlock exclusive digital rewards and help Scholastic donate books to communities in need.
As parents, none of us have a ton of free time, so here's a 1-minute cheat sheet on the top things you need to know about this Challenge.
- It’s totally FREE to sign up!
- The Challenge runs from May 6 to September 6.
- You should check to see if your child's teacher, local libarian, or a local community partner organization (like a youth center) is partaking in the Challenge, so your child can participate as part of a group. If not, you can sign your kids up separately any time between now and when the Challenge ends.
- After signing up, kids get access to a cool dashboard where they (or their parents on their behalf) can log their reading minutes. If your child can't read independently yet, minutes that you spend reading aloud count! The dashboard will keep a running tally of those minutes — in other words, no posters, spreadsheets, or whiteboards with grids cluttering up your house.
- As minutes are tallied, participants earn badges and digital prizes, like free chapters of popular books. These prizes are stored on the dashboard so your child doesn't have to worry about losing anything.
- With every reading minute logged, Scholastic gets closer to donating books to kids with limited or no access to books across the country. (Scholastic has pledged to donate at least 200,000 books by the end of summer.) Learn more about the initiative and other ways you can help here.
- You can check out this parent guide for more info on this year's Challenge. You can also view great selections from the lists at the Scholastic Store Online.
Here are your guides to amazing book picks by age from the Challenge: