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Read-A-Thon

1. What are the goals of the KIDS FOR KIDS Readathon?

Goal #1To motivate children to read for fun, enjoy reading more
overcome reading obstacles, and find more time to read.

Goal #2 To encourage children to help other children and to empower
them to feel that there is something they can do about terrorism.

Goal #3 To show support from children all over the world for the
children of Israel who have been most hurt by terrorism.

Goal #4 To encourage parents to read to their children and to
encourage children to read to each other.

2. Who can run a KIDS FOR KIDS Read-A-Thon?

A librarian, teacher, principal or parent volunteer can run a school-wide
readathon. A Rabbi, teacher or Youth Group leader can run a readathon for
a synagogue, classroom or youth group.  Individual children can also hold
their own personal readathons.

3. How does the KIDS FOR KIDS Readathon work?

The Read-A-Thon is held over a specified period of time. During that time,
the participating children try to read as much as they can. They can read
anything they want. The goal is to read 2000 minutes (approximately 33
hours). The children find one or more sponsors who will agree to donate
either a penny or more per minute for every minute they read, or a certain amount of money such as $10 when the children finish the entire contest.
When the children read 500, 1,000, 1,500 and 2,000 minutes they earn
stickers or prizes. When they finish 2,000 minutes or the contest ends,
they collect the money from their sponsors and turn it in to the contest
coordinator who sends it to KIDS FOR KIDS.

4. How long should a Read-A-Thon be?

We have found 2 months is a good length to maintain excitement and
provide enough time to read 2,000 minutes. The contest is best when
planned around a long school vacation when there is plenty of extra
time to read. We read by the minute rather than by the book because
this makes it more fair for slower readers.

5. Where can you get prizes and what kind should they be?

A PTA or PTO is often very happy to support a Readathon by providing
money for prizes. Businesses are often willing to donate merchandise
and community service organizations can also be asked to sponsor prizes.
We use bookmarks, stickers, rainbow glasses and small toys as reading
incentives. The grand prize for the class that reads the most minutes or
raises the most money is an ice cream party. This could also be a popcorn
or pizza party. We tell the KIDS that the best prizes are the ones they can't see - all of the great stories they'll read, the better reading skills they'll gain, and the smiles on the faces of the children they'll help.

6. How do you find a sponsor?

Parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, older brothers and sisters, and
neighbors are good choices to ask to be sponsors. Some KIDS have put
announcements in their synagogue or neighborhood newsletters and
asked their rabbis to ask for sponsors during their speeches. Many KIDS sponsor themselves by donating their own money.

7. What are some special events you can do to make the Readathon even more exciting?

Some schools have a "Dress Up As Your Favorite Character Day," with prizes for the best costumes.
Some classes have an all day read-in when they can bring their pillows
and blankets and snuggle in for an a full day of reading in class. Some
libraries have a "Sleepover," when KIDS come in their pajamas to hear
bedtime stories. Some schools and libraries have a Family Reading Night,
when whole families come to hear guest readers read and tell stories.

8. Who wins and do you have to finish to win?

Everybody wins! The school has a reading success story, the students
become better readers and earn prizes that make them happy, parents
are proud of their children's reading gains and charitable efforts, and the
children in Israel who are hurting the most feel that somebody cares.

9. Where does the money go?

The money goes to KIDS FOR KIDS, an organization in Israel that provides
professional trauma services, safe houses for KIDS stranded by acts of
terrorism, and special events to cheer up KIDS. KIDS FOR KIDS supports
children who are themselves victims of terrorism to help other terror victims
by visiting them in hospitals and sponsoring "support circles" for emotional
support.

10. How do you begin?

Click on the links below to print the rules, reading chart and pledge sheet,
read a letter from Rebbetzin Yeshara Gold, director of KIDS FOR KIDS, and
to find out more about KIDS FOR KIDS.

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