Summer is the season kids long for. They pine for an end to school and celebrate when the final bell rings. But a week into the break many kids pop into the kitchen with a “Mom, I'm bored. There's nothing to do.” This summer, keep your child engaged and busy (and away from the TV, natch) with an incentive-based reading program:

Barnes and Noble: Read eight books, record the titles on a form, and earn a FREE book from the retailer's prepared book list. Fast readers can expect to earn all the books. The company provides great titles to choose from and the list changes every year.

Pottery Barn: Unexpected, but true! If your child reads all of the books on a recommended list, they earn a FREE book! The company has posted clear directions.

Scholastic: Kids log reading minutes for a chance to win fun prizes. Beyond that, the project offers kids a chance to be part of a bigger goal: breaking the Guinness world record for summer reading minutes. Learn more at Scholastic.

iVillage and PBS: These organizations have teamed up for a six-week program called “Summer Community Reading Challenge.”  In addition to the sweepstakes for prizes and $1000, get daily emails with book discounts, reading suggestions, ideas for fun activities, and FREE downloads of PBS shows! Sign up to get started.

Sylvan Book Adventure: This program is for kids who want a challenge. Points are awarded for book quizzes with scores above 90 percent. Accumulate points to earn a variety of prizes. There are quizzes on roughly 8,000 book titles.

Half Price Books: Dedicate 15 minutes a day to reading any book during June and July, and earn a $5 gift card! This program is created for kids 14 and under.

Local: Check your local library or independent bookseller for summer reading programs. Many offer prizes and free activities.

There are lots of ways to make summer reading free and fun!

 This has been a guest post by Brittany from Sacramento, CA.
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