This story originally appeared at InspireMore.
Giving kids an incentive to do well in school is nothing new, but doing so in a fun and innovative manner can be a challenge for educators.
Many elementary, middle, and high schools across the country have started a new initiative to increase reading in their students, and it’s such a wonderful idea that we’re amazed no one thought of it sooner. It all started when the vice principal of a school in Buffalo, New York, reached out to local company Global Vending Group with a rather unusual idea.
Recognizing that literacy rates were lower than desired, the administrator wanted to do something about it. And GVG was just the company to help. Working with educators, they developed a way to get kids excited about reading again.
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GVG designed a kid-friendly vending machine they now call Inchy’s Bookworm Vending MachineTM. Unlike machines that vend candy, soda, or other snacks, the Bookworm holds 200-300 copies of up to 20 different books. The books offer a wide variety of subjects, genres, and reading levels. It also doesn’t take money to operate; it uses Inchy Golden Tokens.
Schools can choose how students earn tokens based on their needs and goals. Some have chosen to reward kids through good behaviors like getting their homework done, being kind to others, or simply making good choices. Using the machine makes obtaining books special and fun, and when the books are seen as a reward children get an extra thrill out of making their selections. Not only that but unlike the library, the kids actually get to keep the books they choose!
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Frankie Arata, librarian at Oak Chan Elementary School in California says that’s a big part of what made Inchy so successful in her school, “It has been the biggest hit! Kids are loving it.” She continues, “If they get to pick out the book they want to read, they’re more apt to want to actually read it. So often, they’re told by their parents what to read. This fosters a love of reading and gives them a real sense of ownership.”
The results from schools that have installed Inchy’s Bookworm Vending Machine are overwhelmingly positive. “We had no idea it was going to be so exciting for the kids but it’s been crazy!” Arata gushed. What’s more, the rollout of Inchy has sent many schools into viral fame. Everyone is in agreement: There’s something so wonderful about seeing kids so excited to read real books!
GVG, the company that created Inchy’s Bookworm Vending Machine, hopes that more schools will get on board with this important new literacy tool. According to their website:
“We believe that the combination of vending books and your own personalized reward system could bridge the gap between literacy and engagement. Social responsibility should be a big part of any company. We are proud for utilizing our resources and directing them towards literacy for all students. This program is a great way we can prepare children for the future. Let’s bring engagement and excitement to reading books again!”
What an incredible new way to get kids excited about reading! Rewarding good behavior while also instilling a passion for books in kids will hopefully lead to a lifetime of learning and opening their minds. Bravo to GVG and the educators who are bringing Inchy’s Bookworm Vending Machine to schools across the nation!
Don’t forget to share this story to spread the word about this innovative new movement in education. If you’re interested in bringing Inchy to your school, click here!