Motivating Readers Without All The Gimmicks and Junk

Updated: Oct 24, 2019

Everyone has to read…everyday…until death do us part! Right? Right! It’s a life skill.

So, we need to find a way to motivate those young readers to build a lifelong endurance and enthusiasm for reading. And, YEP, I’m gonna say it…

  • AR ain’t gonna do it

  • Pizza coupons ain’t gonna do it

  • Bookmarks and candy in March ain’t gonna do it

  • Dressing up like Dr. Seuss ain’t gonna do it

  • Getting students to parade around all day with their favorite book ain’t gonna do it

So, you want to know how to motivate

those young readers

to build a lifelong

endurance and enthusiasm for reading?

“Of course I do”, you say. “But how?”

Okay, so I shared earlier this week the books that I WANT to add to my personal professional bookshelf.

I want to share another book that was recently included in my professional research collection. As I was cleaning up my desk and school bag after the last day of school, I came across a book that I bought a couple months ago but never read. It’s short, so I read it in an afternoon.

When I first saw this book on Amazon, the cover image and title spoke to me and touched that deep opinion and passion that I have always had about reading—the toys, the trinkets, the candy, the pizza. All of those bribes for reading have always offended me as a literacy teacher. Sorry if I’ve offended any of you by saying that, but please hear me out.

I want students to read because they want to read for their unique self-selected purposes.

I don’t want students reading for junk.

So…here it is…From the Not This But That series by Nell R. Duke and Ellin Oliver Keene:

No More Reading for Junk: Best Practices for Motivating Readers by Barbara A. Marinak and Linda B. Gambrall

When I opened the front cover and began reading the first chapter, angels began singing. Okay, maybe that didn’t really happen, but it should have!!

The authors wrote about tried and true ways to motivate students to choose reading for their own authentic purposes. I know they are tried and true strategies because I’ve implemented many of the strategies discussed in the book. And yes…I had students who read for unique and self-selected purposes.

So, you should check out this quick read to gather ideas and strategies for motivating readers.

The image and text links above and the following are Amazon affiliate links.

I may earn from any qualifying purchases.

Until next time...


Here at Literacy Treasures, I LOVE to talk about reading and writing and share with teachers all that I've learned about what it takes to build strong readers and writers. I have immersed myself in the research of Lucy Calkins, Jennifer Serravallo, Stephanie Harvey, Debbie Miller, Carl Anderson, Gay Su Pinnell, Irene Fountas and so many others.  Every resource, strategy, tool, minilesson and teaching tip that is shared on Literacy Treasures is rooted in this research