Pizza. Pez dispensers. Nerf balls. When we give students “junk” to reward reading, we are focusing their intention away from the act of reading and from their own independence as readers. Instead, we can create classrooms where reading is seen as its own reward. In No More Reading for Junk, esteemed researcher Linda Gambrell provides a research-based context for cultivating children’s intrinsic motivation to read. Reading specialist and researcher Barbara Marinak shares the strategies and techniques that make a difference for student readers’ motivation, turning disengaged readers into passionate ones.
Research tells us that when schools provide rewards as incentives for reading, despite their best intentions, the results lead to a decrease in long-term reading motivation for students. Authors Barbara A. Marinak and Linda Gambrell led the study on this topic and, combined with their classroom experience, have written No More Reading for Junk: Best Practices for Motivating Readers. Below is a section from the opening of chapter one, written by Barbara. This is followed by a video of Barbara talking about one reluctant reader who made it clear she wasn't interested in reading. Or was she?
In the newest book from the "Not This But That" series, No More Reading For Junk, coauthors Barbara A. Marinak and Linda B. Gambrell want a classroom where reading is its own reward, instead of reading being a means to accrue junk prizes like pizza or spinning tops or raffle tickets or, in this excerpt from the book, a chance to put the school's principal on the roof for an entire day. While entertaining, these prizes are short-lived and distracting from the real goal: creating confident and empowered readers who stay motivated for life.