Behind the Books with the BOOK IT! Team

 

Were you a BOOK IT! kid? For 34 years, the BOOK IT! Program has motivated children to read by rewarding their reading accomplishments with praise, recognition and pizza. The program currently reaches more than 14 million students nationwide and serves 620,000 classrooms from kindergarten to 6th grade. To date, the iconic program has reached 1 in 5 Americans (65 million nationwide), and its time-tested approach to encouraging reading has made a tremendous impact.

The BOOK IT! team works year-round to ensure the program fits the needs of teachers, parents and students. So what goes into this process? Let’s take a look at what the BOOK IT! team does to prepare for a great “reading season.” Go behind the scenes to see how the team of seven brings the program to life.

Partnerships

BOOK IT! is in the third year of a literary partnership with two-time Newbery Medal award-winning author, Kate DiCamillo. DiCamillo’s Tales from Deckawoo Drive series is being incorporated into all BOOK IT! classroom materials, teacher printables, videos and web creative- at no cost to schools. Prior to the DiCamillo partnership, the program teamed up with New York Times bestselling author Jeff Kinney and his wildly successful Diary of a Wimpy Kid series. These partnerships encourage a passion for reading in a fun and relevant way.

Content Planning & Engagement

To keep schools informed and involved, the team continuously engages with teachers, parents and program alumni via newsletters and social channels. In fact, reading giveaways hosted on Facebook have been known to generate nearly 45,000 entries. Talk about a love of reading! The program’s reach generates a lot of buzz resulting in more than 8,000 phone calls and 3,000 emails answered by the team each year.

What’s Next?

The program is expanding to reach 1 million classrooms by 2020. To achieve this, the program plans to enhance the experience by rolling out a digital option this fall. This version is still the same great program teachers know and love, but it will be even easier to reward students for reading and celebrate success with a memorable classroom experience. Plus, parents will receive their child’s digital award certificate straight to their inbox making online redemption available within the program for the first time.

Get Involved

Since 1984, the Pizza Hut BOOK IT! Program has motivated children to read by rewarding their reading accomplishments with praise, recognition and pizza. Spread the word and make sure your child, grandchild, neighbor’s teacher and school are enrolled in the program! All K-6 grade schools are eligible to participate and enrollment is currently open. For questions, please email bookitteam@yum.com.

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