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Ivannia Soto was an exemplary scholar-practitioner. Her scholarly contributions are impressive and include 14 published books, but perhaps even more impressive was her dedication...

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Spoonfuls of Reading to Fundraise

Elementary schools often struggle with the parallel challenges of raising money to support a range of activities and the desire to get kids reading more. SpoonRead offers an innovative solution that can solve both problems at the same time.
Born from technologist and father Bart Meltzer’s personal struggle to get his son to read more, his solution involved sending chunks or “spoonfuls” of text to his son’s phone, followed by a question to validate the reading. After testing the concept to the delight of administrators, teachers, and parents, his company now offers schools a SpoonRead-a-thon. The 14-to-30-day reading challenge event has kids read the full text of authentic literature and earn virtual coins for correctly answering each validation question. Kids are drawn to the game-like quality and the opportunity to compete to win prizes for their reading.

Rather than having kids sell cookie dough or candy bars, parents buy books and a portion of the proceeds goes directly to the school or classroom. The company’s secure donation engine lets schools extend their donation base to grandparents, other family members, and friends. The books currently available on the platform include hundreds of best-loved titles from a range of major publishers including HMH, Workman, and Hachette. SpoonRead says that it is now increasing its number of Spanish-language titles as well.

To help support struggling readers, the platform also includes tools that will read the text aloud and will allow students to click on unfamiliar vocabulary to see a definition. To address possible equity issues, the company makes promotion codes available to allow access for economically disadvantaged students.

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