Summer Reading Incentives


May 19, 2018

Want to increase your chances of helping encourage summer reading? Try some of these great incentives to get your kids to put in a little extra reading time.

A Penny Per Page

As simple as it sounds—pay them per page that they read. This is a favorite and it can add up, but it really hasn’t ever felt too overwhelming. And kids of all ages love money.

Pool Floats

Pull out the pool floats, blow them up and let them read inside the house or out on the lawn. Kids think this is such a fun NEW place to read and can add excitement reading time.

Punch Cards

Punch cards are a fun way to get kids to read. Create a punch card with however many punches you think is appropriate for your child’s reading level and will keep them motivated. For me I like to make sure they will get one reward per week, so they don’t lose hope or it doesn’t take too long to see the reward. Once they get all their punches have a reward they can earn. I like doing ice cream cones, shaved ice, or sonic drink.

Snack Bucket

Have a bucket of FUN snacks reserved only for quiet readers. I fill it full of small chip bags, juice boxes, popcorn bags etc. (these are rare snacks at our house, so these treats feel extremely fun).  Let your kids grab a snack and sit somewhere quiet to read. The rule with picking a snack is that they have to commit to reading at least 20 minutes.

Chewing Bubble Gum

I use this for my reluctant or beginning readers. Get a tupperware and fill it with bubble gum balls, bubble tape, etc The flavor on these pieces of gum lasts about 5 to 10 minutes and once the flavor is gone they can either pick a new piece or call it quits. Sometimes it is easier for struggling readers/beginning readers to work in short spurts and not feel overwhelmed.

Treasure Box

Hit up your local dollar store (with your kids in tow) let them each pick out a few items to put into the box. They will be more excited when they have helped pick out some of the items. When they reach their reading goal let them pick something out.

Line Graph/Color By Number/Color a Drawing

Make a chart and fill it up! My kids love doing this. For every 20 minutes they read or every 20 pages they read (whatever the goal is you want them to accomplish) let them color in a section. Once they reach the top take them for a Sonic drink, a shaved ice, or ice cream treat (McDonald’s is one of or favorite cheap options😁👌🏼). *WOULD YOU BE INTERESTED IN SOME FREE PRINTABLES? LET ME KNOW BELOW AND I CAN ADD SOME DOWNLOADS HERE.

Movies Based On Books

Make a list of books that have been made into movies. Once your child reads the book let them have a movie night and watch the movie.

Book Themed Activity

Have your child read a book and plan an activity that relates to the book. For example, we read Freckle Juice and we had an Italian soda tasting party (as a family). I have more examples if you are interested.

Personal Pizza

I grew up doing the Book It! program through Pizza Hut. Did anyone else? So, I borrowed this idea from them one Summer. I rewarded the kids with personal pizza’s when they met their individual book goals. They loved getting their personal sized pizza from Puzza Hut when they met their book goals.


Check with your local library, they (usually) offer Summer reading incentive/reward programs.

  1. Emily says:

    Thank you for the fun ideas! I would love to hear more book-themed ideas. And yes, please for free coloring chart printables. Thank you for putting this together!

  2. Courtney says:

    This list is great! Thank you! I’d love a free printable for a line graph or chart incentive. Thanks!

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