Irondale students participate in incentive-based reading program

(CBS42)
(CBS42)

[lin_video src=http://eplayer.clipsyndicate.com/embed/player.js?aspect_ratio=16x9&auto_next=1&auto_start=0&div_id=videoplayer-1366235330&height=480&page_count=5&pf_id=9624&show_title=1&va_id=4021318&width=640&windows=2 service=syndicaster width=640 height=480 div_id=videoplayer-1366235330 type=script]IRONDALE, Ala. (WIAT) — While it looks like any typical store with products that children would enjoy, the currency used to purchase items is far different from a normal store.

Students at the Irondale Community School use points they earn from reading to buy items at the Accelerated Reader (AR) store.

“For us, it’s just getting cool stuff, but it’s really that we’re learning more by reading and getting points at the AR store,” Cierra Bugaj said.

Accelerated Reader is a commonly used reading program where students earn points related to the reading level of a book. The students take tests to prove they actually retain knowledge from the break they just read.

“They’re really reading now and trying to gain points,” Valerie McBride said. “[They’re] trying to make sure they have a high average so they can get things they want.”

But, does the idea work? Do boomerangs and headbands actually make students want to read more? According to students at Irondale Community School, the answer is a resounding, “Yes!”

“I know sometimes you can just read for fun, but if you take AR tests on them you can come to the AR store and you can get prizes to take home,” student Justise Griggs said. “That’s what makes it all cool to read.”

“It’s like you can go shopping in the school,” student Emma Kao said. “It’s really, really amazing!”

By January of 2013, the school’s overall reading volume had already surpassed the total reading volume from all of 2012.

Copyright 2013 WIAT-TV CBS 42

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