Thursday, January 16, 2014

Thrive Thursday: Read Your Way to a Party Intro

I have been excitedly waiting for our first event in our new reading incentive program titled:

Read Your Way to a Party!

Our first 8 week session of this program is actually having 
our young library friends work on earning their way to a 

Cookie Party!

This is our large wall display where we will
keep track of who is earning an invitation
to our first party. 
The program consists of two parts. One is library-related and the other can be completed outside the library for those who can only visit the library occasionally.

The basics are:
  • Participants must be in grades K through 5.
  • Reading logs must be kept over the 8 week period. They must be completed and turned in on a specific date.
  • Each participant must earn a total of 8 cookies to qualify for an invitation to our exciting Cookie Party.
  • To earn a cookie, participants either read for 2 hours to earn a round cookie or complete 2 specific activities for a gingerbread man cookie.
  • Each time a librarian signs off on reading time or activities, the child is given a paper cookie to decorate and place up on the display.
Our first two cookies added to the cookie jar
The program includes meet-ups at the library on the 1st, 3rd, and 5th Wednesdays of the month for an hour-long event. Participants are not required to attend. But, if they do, they will get assistance with the library-related activities and they will be introduced to tons of good books and authors; view quality children's videos; either make a fun craft or participate in unusual literacy-related games. In other words, tons and tons of afterschool fun!

For our first meet-up, my co-worker chose a Cat theme.
We set out cat items from all sections of the children's area ~ picture books,
easy readers, chapter books, non-fiction books, magazines, videos, etc.

My co-worker read a cat book to our library friends and then we made some awesome corner bookmarks. I actually found a cat corner bookmark and a monster corner bookmark by using Google.
I made this purple cat corner bookmark for my co-worker
who adores cats. No surprise!

Both websites that I found on Google had a template. I printed each one out on cardstock. The templates made the craft much easier for the younger participants. All they needed to do was pick their paper ~ I provided lots of crazy, colorful paper as well as solid colors ~ draw around the template, cutout the shape, decorate, fold and glue. Very simple! Very fun !

 Although they liked the monster bookmarks that I shared with them, everyone decided to make cats for their book buddies. Perfect choice, don't you think?

Two of our purrr-fect book buddies. 

While creating our corner bookmarks, we talked about books that everyone had read recently. It was as awesome discussion during which I discovered that some of the friends did not know who Pete the Cat is. WHAT?!??! No way!!

Of course, we had to remedy this horrible problem! Once everyone was duly introduced to Pete the Cat, I decided to make a Pete the Cat corner bookmark by tweaking the pattern a little.

Isn't he the cool-est cat ever?

We ended our meet-up with a video of another cool literary cat ~ Splat the Cat ~ along with every cat's favorite snack, Goldfish crackers! 

Definitely a great way to end our first Read Your Way to a Cookie Party session!

Here is a quick look at our first reading log (each participant will need to fill out two different logs for this 8 week session), our paper cookies before decorating, the sample corner bookmarks ~ monster and cat ~ and a special Pete the Cat bookmark with our library information stamped on back.

That is a quick overview of our new reading incentive program.
I look forward to sharing our future meet-ups and information on how things 
are working and not working  
~ What we find successful and what we need to tweak as we go. ~

I know I didn't cover everything in detail here ~ like the activities aspect of the log ~ but I hope to share more details over the next 8 weeks. I also plan to share the preparations for our Cookie Party. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please feel free to email them to me at or leave them in the comments below.


***If you noticed the title of this post, you may be asking yourself, "What is Thrive Thursday?" Good question! It is a new Blog Hop that I am linking to this week. It is a weekly compilation of programming ideas for school-age children. I am excited to be linking up for the first time but the Hop has been going on for months. Be sure to check all of them out at the host blog, Thrive After Three.

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