Book It Program Kicks Off At GES
By Lynne Marascalco
GES & GUES Librarian
The Book It Program is sponsored by Pizza Hut and provides an extra incentive for children to read more, “not because they have to but because they want to.” The program was started by Art Gunther in 1984. He was searching for a way to motivate his son, a struggling reader, to read more. He took his son to work with him for a slice of pizza and some one-on-one time. He found that the combination of praise, recognition, and a dash of pepperoni was all it took to instill a love of reading in his child.
The program runs every year from October through March. Teachers set reading goals, and as each child accomplishes that goal, they receive a coupon for a Personal Pan Pizza. The program is flexible in that it can be used with children of different reading levels and abilities or with non-reading students along with parental help. According to National Statistics, children are reading more and developing in word recognition skills.