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Summer Challenge 101 for Parents

New to the Summer Reading Challenge? Don’t worry, we’re giving you a crash course: The Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge for parents 101.

Learning Benefits

The 10 things you need to know:

  1. The Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge…what is it? Now in its 8th year, the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge is a free global reading program aimed to keep kids reading all summer long. Starting May 5, 2014, kids can read books, log their reading minutes (online and on smartphones) as they Read for the World Record, enter sweepstakes to win fabulous prizes, and earn digital rewards when they complete weekly reading challenges. This year’s theme is "Reading Under the Stars!" Kids will unlock constellations and learn fun facts about space as they reach reading milestones every week.
  2. Why should we join?  Studies show that when kids don’t read over the summer, they lose core reading skills and fall behind when they go back to school. Keeping kids reading over the summer helps them maintain or increase their reading and learning skills.   
  3. How do I sign my child up?  There are two ways to register. First, check with your child’s teacher to see if he or she signed up the entire class already.  If so, the teacher has assigned your child a username and password.  If not, you and your child can go to and sign up. It’s free! Although kids can log minutes through any desktop browser,  mobile device (tablets or phones) browser, or through the free Scholastic Reading Timer mobile app on iOS and Android devices (see #10), you must register or authenticate via a desktop browser first.
  4. How old does my child have to be? 4-14 is the core age, but if you read to your younger children, you can log reading minutes on their behalf.
  5. Sign in to the website? Is that safe? YES! There are COPPA (Children's Online Privacy Protection Act) laws that Scholastic adheres to.  It is completely safe for kids.
  6. My school is not participating. Can my child still sign up for the Challenge? Absolutely! Parents can help their kids register by going to Click on “kids” and then follow the instructions to pick a user name and password. After entering your country and state, you can find your children’s school so their reading minutes will count for the school. Make sure to check your email as you will receive an approval email asking permission for reading minutes to be applied to your child’s school.
  7. What’s the benefit of having my child’s minutes count for the school? The top 20 schools will be listed in the 2015 Scholastic Book of World Records and will receive a “Reading Plaque” to display at school and a badge for their website. The top school in each state will also receive a plaque. AND, this year there will be 2 grand prizes for the schools that read/log the most minutes: a school visit from David Shannon (elementary school grand prize) and  a school visit from Gordon Korman (middle school grand prize). So make sure to find your child’s school on the list.
  8. My child is still in school – does that mean we have to wait for summer vacation to start? No! Kids can start logging minutes right away through September 5, 2014..
  9. I am always looking for creative ways to keep my kids reading. Any suggestions? Sure! We have LOTS of great ideas.  Check out the Scholastic Parents Facebook page to find the new content calendar that provides free daily expert tips and articles, activities, discounts on books, and special Friday giveaways. You can also find details about upcoming Facebook chats.
  10. If we go on vacation this summer, how do we log our minutes? Log them on-the-go with the free Scholastic Reading Timer mobile app, available for iOS and Android devices. Use your child’s summer challenge username and password to log minutes, spin the prize wheel to earn rewards, and help set a new world record for summer reading! Plus, parents can see how many minutes their child logged and access articles and tips to encourage kids to read.

Hope this helps! Go to to get started.  Follow us on Facebook for more tips on summer reading.  And, happy reading! 

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