The ability to read and comprehend begins early in a child’s educational experience. Elementary school children develop oral reading fluency and comprehension skills through repetition. Difficulty can arise with students of low socioeconomic status who lack the foundational skills necessary to achieve success in reading (Hart & Riley, 2003). They do not acquire the expressive language and vocabulary skills, and access to experiences as their peers from more affluent households (Hart & Riley, 2003).
The focus of education today is to ensure that students are college and career ready by the time they graduate from high school. Students must analyze information with varying degrees of complexity to learn to think critically, as well as meet the rigorous demands of college and career courses.
A major way to best prepare children for success in college and their career is to ensure early reading success. By reading more, children will become more proficient and possibly develop a passion for reading that can help them become lifelong readers.
A great way to reward and recognize students for their reading is through positive reinforcement.
I.N.S.P.I.R.E. Rewards and Recognition Program provide students with incentives, such as toys, computers, electronic items and mountain bikes, students will increase the number of books that they read for pleasure.
Some of the benefits for reading for pleasure are improved reading attainment and writing ability, text comprehension and grammar, breadth of vocabulary, increased general knowledge and a better understanding of other cultures (Clark and Rumbold, 2006).
Our mission during the 2015-2016 school year was to get students reading more! Through the incentive program, students not only accomplished their goals during the school day, but we also found that 72% of Lafayette students were so highly motivated by I.N.S.P.I.R.E. that they logged into Achieve 3000 after school hours 2,739 hours.