FREE Summer Reading Programs are a fantastic way to keep kids reading over their school break. Reading is an important tool to help prevent summer slide. Those months of vacation are the perfect time to dig into a new series, fall in love with a new character, and enjoy learning something new.

There are a variety of other free summer reading programs available that encourage kids to read over the summer… or even year round. Local banks and businesses may even offer reading incentives, but here are a few you can find across the country.

FREE Summer Reading Programs

The Best FREE Summer Reading Programs for Kids

Your Public Library

Your public library may have the best FREE Summer Reading Program you’ll find. The requirements and rewards vary by city.  Some offer free books. Others offer weekly coupon bundles for free merchandise at local retailers. Check with your local library to see what their summer reading program has to offer.

Barnes & Noble Summer Reading

When your child reads eight books, they’ll receive a free book from a list of specific titles. There is also a free summer reading journal to download.  When the journal is filled, bring it to the store to receive the free book.  And as a bonus parents can enter to win a free Nook e-reader when kids turn in their journals.

Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge

Kids log their reading time as they participate in weekly reading challenges, earn rewards, and enter sweepstakes.  While this summer reading program is designed to encourage whole schools to read, kids whose schools are not signed up are able to participate as an individual.

Chuck E. Cheese Rewards Calendar

Kids set their own reading goal. When they achieve it they are rewarded with free tokens for Chuck E. Cheese.  Kids can download a calendar to track their progress.  They then bring in their completed calendar to receive 10 free tokens.

Book Adventure

Run by Sylvan Learn Centers, this is a reading motivation program that encourages kids to read all year long.  Kids can earn points by reading books and completing quizzes.  These points can then be exchanged for prizes like books, magazine subscriptions, candy, CDs, and games.

Half Price Books

Half Price Books gives out free gift cards to kids who read book over the summer.  When kids read for 300 minutes during June and July, they receive a free $5 gift card per month to Half Price Books.  

Must Read Books for your Summer Reading List

The Best Summer Themed Book Lists for Kids

Book It!

BOOK IT! motivates kids to read by rewarding their reading with pizza!  This program is simple, fun, and flexible.  Set a reading goal each month.  When the goal is reached, your child is presented with a Reading Award Certificate good for a free one-topping Personal Pan Pizza.  

Pottery Barn Kids Book Club

Did you know that Pottery Barn Kids holds a weekly story time? Here’s the best part. If you attend 5 of their story time events, and fill out their form, they’ll give you a special surprise.

TD Bank Summer Reading Program

Start a savings account for your kids this summer. All they have to do is read. Get $10 deposited into your child’s savings account when they read 10 books, fill out the form, and take it to your local TD Bank.

There are the top FREE Summer Reading Programs we recommend you try this summer. If you found this list helpful, please share it with your friends by pinning it or sharing it on Facebook. If you know of a great Summer Reading Program we’ve missed, leave us comment. We’d love to add it to our list.

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