Thursday, July 2, 2015

Summer Reading Prizes

Last summer Abby at Abby the Librarian had a great post about how she revamped her summer reading program prizes.  While I wanted to revamp our prizes for this summer, most of our staff didn't when we started to plan for 2015.  We all know that you need staff buy-in to make a radical change.  To test the waters, we offered her science activity packs as a prize option in our Winter Reading Club.  After seeing how popular those were, we were ready to go.

Our science activity packs form 1/4 of our first prize for summer reading (5 hours or 20 books).  This is the level where kids get to pick their own prize out of a treasure chest.  The other three prizes are mustache sticky notes, superhero erasers, and superhero kick balls.  The science activity packs are, by far, the most popular item in the treasure chest.  So if you were on the fence about this sort of prize, you will definitely want to try it!

Activity Pack #1-Balloon Rockets
We totally "borrowed" this one from Abby.  We used this as a winter reading prize and the kiddos still aren't sick of it.  In fact, they are picking it again.  Abby's directions and supply list are located here.  

Activity Pack #2-Catapults
We used the directions from our catapult program and created packs with all of the supplies needed.   We also included 1 pom pom so they had something to launch.

Activity Pack #3-Floating Ball
When looking for new ideas, we looked for things that we could easily and cheaply assemble in a plastic bag.  This is a little harder than it sounds.  We lucked out when we found the Floating Ball.  Our baggie includes:

  • 1 5-inch paper circle cut out of cardstock
  • 1 straw
  • 1 ping pong ball
With 2 pieces of scotch tape, a pair of scissors, and the instructions that we wrote up, kids can do this activity.


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