Every fall after the madness of Summer has settled down and the kids are back in school, you get but yet another onslaught of parents looking for books by the truckload, Reading Bingo. Any reading program is great and there are many benefits for students, but there can definitely be some challenges for librarians. Hopefully, this article will help you be more prepared when the season hits.
Reading Bingo is a challenge issued by school districts, teachers or school librarians, depending on your district and how they have it set up. My library serves a school district that issues Reading Bingo at the district level and they have the forms available online for each grade. We are very lucky; this is definitely not the case for everyone and it can cause some challenges if these lists are difficult to find. If you happen to work in a district that does not offer reading bingo, it is definitely something you could consider offering to the community through the public library.
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Reading Bingo programs are exciting, usually incentive based projects that encourage kids to read a variety of genres. Exposure to new genres is going to have a positive impact on all kids including those that already love to read and kids who struggle or are reluctant. If you have a kid who loves to read, but has never left the fiction section, they may discover a whole library of books they would have never discovered on their own. Reading Bingo is a great way to expose reluctant readers to a vast variety of books, hopefully increasing the chances that they will find something to connect with. Another benefit of Reading Bingo is that it prepares kids for the much stricter required reading that is in their future. Reading Bingo gets them out of their reading comfort zone and gets them used to the idea of reading what someone else assigns them. Reading Bingo programs are a simple way to engage kids with new and interesting books.
While Reading Bingo programs have great benefits for kids, they create a lot of work for librarians. If you work for a busy public library, it can be hard to leave the desk to help a parent find 20 books. Here are a couple of tricks you can use to help patrons quickly:
Hopefully, these tips will help you avoid getting a line at the reference desk every time you help someone with Reading Bingo, Good Luck!
Let’s Collaborate! What’s the strangest or hardest category you have ever had in a Reading Bingo form? Comment below: