Reading challenges for the new year have popped up everywhere on social media. I thought I’d do something similar for the 3rd through 5th graders at the elementary school where I am working as a long term guest librarian (um, I meant “information literacy specialist”). I thought a fun way for the kids to keep track of their readings is with a punch card (see below). It also serves as a reminder of the different genres they need to cover.
This challenge is optional, but I want to encourage kids to take part in it. When I asked a few students what might motivate them, of course most of them said they wanted prizes…but not dud ones like bookmarks or erasers (one said because that’d be a “waste of time”…which, I admit, broke my heart a little, because reading certainly shouldn’t be considered a “waste of time” just because there’s no extrinsic reward attached to it!). Since as the guest ILS I actually have no budget for this, I am unsure how I’ll proceed. I don’t mind putting in a little of my own money so the finishers can get a prize, but I can’t afford to give out that many “good” prizes either (again, seeing that I’m “just the sub”!). This challenge will also have to be completed on an honors basis…I can see some kids SAYING they’d read something just so they can get their cards punched. One possible way to prevent this from happening could be to have students fill out a short book review or make a book trailer for each of the book before I punch their card, but then I wonder if this would discourage them from doing it. So, back to the drawing board for now. I told the kids I’ll figure the details out by some time next week, so if you have run something similar at your library and it was a success, let me know how you got it done! Remember, I’m at a school library and I have ZERO budget!