Barnes & Noble Kicks Off the Annual Summer Reading Program

Last month Barnes and Noble announced the start of their 15th Annual Summer Reading Program.  “The free Summer Reading Program kick[ed] off in Barnes & Noble stores across the country May 24th and continues through September 6th…Children in grades 1-6 can earn a free book just by reading eight books and turning in a completed journal sheet.”  Barnes & Noble hopes this reading program will keep kids motivated to read during the summer months.

We’ve often discussed the importance of reading throughout the summer to avoid the dreaded summer slide. While all summer reading programs are to be commended, Barnes and Noble’s program will enable students to select a reading list that will incorporate targeted reading at their level. By using Barnes and Nobel’s Lexile Reading Level Wizard which estimates a student’s Lexile measure and generates a book list based on their selected interests and reading level.  Students can then select eight books from this reading list, download a journal from Barnes and Noble, and begin their summer reading adventure with books that offer just the right amount of challenge. 

Be sure to take a look.

Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida

The Florida Department of Education will recognize Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! with a number of events planned for the week of Monday, Jan. 24, through Friday, Jan. 28. These events are intended to raise awareness of the literacy programs offered by the Department and its partners, and to promote the enjoyment of reading for children and adults of all ages.

The week-long celebration kicks-off on Monday night at 6:00 p.m. at the Barnes & Noble Booksellers in West Kendall/Miami. Florida author Edward Bloor will be onsite to talk about his work and sign copies of his latest release, “Taken” (640L). Bloor has written four other books for teenagers—including the award-winning “Tangerine (680L)—all of which have Lexile measures and are available on the “Find a Book, Florida” site. 

Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida!is a collaborative effort between MetaMetrics, Barnes & Noble, the Florida Education Foundation and the Florida Department of Education. According to Florida Education Commissioner Dr. Eric J. Smith, “We are very excited to be able to kick off Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida!with such a huge, multi-dimensional partnership. The attendance of Mr. Bloor and the generosity of our partners make this a perfect opportunity to create a renewed focus on student literacy in 2011.”

During Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida!, all Florida students are eligible to enter a statewide raffle for one of 20 Barnes & Noble gift cards. To enter, students must bring a completed entry form, which is available on the “Find a Book, Florida” site, and a printout of their “Find a Book” reading list to any Florida Barnes & Noble store. Winners will be selected and notified by the Florida Education Foundation after Jan. 31.

“We are thrilled to be part of this important initiative that encourages all students to extend reading beyond school and into their daily lives,” said MetaMetrics President Malbert Smith III, Ph.D. “With our free ‘Find a Book’ search tool, students can strengthen their reading skills—and develop a greater love of reading—by selecting titles they want and should be able to read.”

The Florida Department of Education relaunched the “Find a Book, Florida” resource in September 2010 to support year-round reading. The free search tool allows students to locate new and intriguing books tailored to their own reading interests. Thousands of fiction and nonfiction titles are available through “Find a Book, Florida,”which helps to match a book’s text complexity with a student’s reading ability using Lexile measures.

For more information, visit (under Stores & Events),, or

Barnes & Launches Kids’ Expert Circle & Makes Headlines with Online Storytime

We’re thrilled to announce the launch of the Barnes & Noble’s Kids’ Expert Circle , where parents can find helpful advice from trusted experts in the fields of literacy, arts and education, child development, and pediatric medicine.

B&N’s experts will be writing articles on topics such as heading home with your newborn, becoming a sibling, starting school, making friends, and potty training, as well as offering product suggestions to help you find the right book or toy for you and your child. For more info and a full list of their experts, click here.

The Expert Circle comes on the heels of B&N’s Online Storytime program, an original monthly video featuring well-known authors and celebrities narrating popular picture books for children ages 2-6. Just some of the authors showcased have been Maurice Sendak reading Where the Wild Things Are and Jane O’Connor reading Fancy Nancy: Bonjour, Butterfly. Upcoming Online Storytimes will be Jan Brett reading her bestseller, The Mitten, for November, and author Chris Van Allsburg reading The Polar Expressfor December. To go to the Online Storytime page, click here.

Now children and parents can experience the same joy of Barnes & Noble’s in-store Storytime events in the comfort of their own homes.

You can also visit your local Barnes & Noble to find displays of each month’s Storytime books.

The good folks at B&N are working really hard to make parenting a little easier—and a lot more fun!

Barnes & Noble Hosts ‘Educator Appreciation Days’

Please join MetaMetrics in supporting Barnes & Noble’s “Educator Appreciation Days” by visiting your local B&N store or visiting them online at Pre-K-12th grade teachers, librarians, literacy specialists and homeschool educators can save 25% on books and 10% on music and DVDs, either in stores or through the B&N website from October 9 – October 17.

As part of Educator Appreciation Days, Barnes & Noble stores in Augusta, GA and Charlotte, NC will host MetaMetrics to facilitate free seminars on Lexile measures. MetaMetrics will discuss what Lexile measures are and how educators can use them to differentiate instruction and monitor reading growth by connecting students with the “right” books that match their ability, interests and goals. The seminars will also explore the resources that educators can use to search for books by Lexile measure in Barnes & Noble stores and on, as well as other free resources on the Lexile website. To find out more, please click here.

MetaMetrics is an educational measurement organization. Our renowned psychometric team develops scientific measures of student achievement that link assessment with targeted instruction to improve learning.