We just got new prizes for our prize cart and the kids are thrilled!
The prize cart is a reading incentive program I use in the Media Center in conjunction with Accelerated Reader. Students in K-1 are required to read 5 books of their choice per month to earn a prize at the end of the month. 3rd-5th grade students are required to read 2 AR books, 2 chapter books, and 1 free choice item to earn a prize at the end of the month. I decorate the prize cart to match our theme in the Media Center. This year's theme is "Get Wild About Reading" so the prize cart has a wild animal decor.
To help students and teachers keep up with what books and how many books they've read, I use a punch card system. The littles get a punch card that looks like a business card and the upper grades get a book mark punch card.
Here are some close up pictures of the prizes on our prize cart:
I got all of these goodies from Oriental Trading and spent about $100.
In addition to these fun items, I also include an extra book check out "coupon" as an option for a prize. This is the first year I've offered it as a prize and it has been more popular than I thought, especially with second grade. Right now K-1st get one book per week, 2nd-3rd get 2 books out at a time, and 4th-5th get 3 books out at a time. I'd love to let students check out more, but I just don't have the help to be able to check out and shelve more than that. However, with the extra book check out "coupon" students can choose to get one extra book when the turn in their "coupon." This makes it manageable for me and fun for the kids.
What kind of fun reading incentive programs do you use to motivate your patrons to READ, READ, READ!?