10+ Summer Reading Programs

Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Summer Reading Program is here to encourage your children to read and earn a FREE book, simply by following these three easy steps:

  1. Read any eight books this summer and record them in your Summer Reading Journal (English or Español). Tell them which part of the book is your favorite, and why.
  2. Bring your completed journal to a Barnes & Noble store between August 1 – 31, 2019.
  3. Choose your FREE reading adventure from the book list featured on the back of the journal.

Also, be sure to join the Barnes & Noble’s free Kids’ Club– as a welcome gift, you’ll receive 30% off the list price on any one kids’ book or toy, a $5 reward for every $100 you spend on kids’ items online and in stores, and a free cupcake from their café for all your children’s birthdays.

Book Adventure
Book Adventure is a fun, free, online way to motivate your child to read! Kids in grades K-8 can search for books, read them offline, come back to quiz on what they’ve read, and earn prizes for their reading success.

Each year, Books-A-Million offers a summer reading program. Read four books on their summer reading form and receive a free drawstring backpack (while supplies last).

Chuck E. Cheese
Looking for a fun way to reward your children for good behavior?  Just download and print out the calendar, mark off days with a pen or sticker as your child accomplishes his/her goals, bring in the completed calendars to Chuck E. Cheese’s and receive 10 free tokens as a reward.  They offer a reading calendar, in addition to practical ones like, “good behavior” and “daily chores.”
This website offers suggestions and printables for creating your own Do-It-Yourself Summer Reading Camp, complete with summer activity collages.

Half Price Books Summer Reading
Once children, who are 14 or younger, have read for 300 minutes, they can turn in their completed reading log (by August 29, 2019) to earn Bookworm Bucks. Highschoolers can also earn Bookworm Bucks, but they must write book reviews.

PBS Kids
Miss A’s favorite series is the Cat in the Hat Learning Library, created by the amazing PBS Kids.  On their website, you can find books they’ve published, suggested reading lists, and practical suggestions for creating a literary home.

Pizza Hut
Their Book It program is winding down for the year, but be sure to sign up for Fall 2019 (it’s open to homeschoolers right now)!  In the meantime, this summer, enjoy their Summer Reading Challenge.  Their website offers printables, online games, book lists, and more.

The Scholastic Summer Challenge is a free reading program dedicated to stopping the “Summer Slide” and encouraging kids to read every day this summer. Kids will unlock virtual prizes and can enter fun giveaways.

Showcase Cinemas
A fun and rewarding summer reading program developed to encourage young children to read during the summer months, Bookworm Wednesdays entitles kids to free admission to a select children’s film when they present a book report at a participating Cinema de Lux, Showcase, or Multiplex Cinemas box office. Accompanying parents or guardians and children under six years of age receive free admission and do not need to submit a book report. Bookworm Wednesdays will resume in summer 2019.

T.D. Bank
In past years, kids in grade K-5 could read 10 books , fill out a summer reading form, take the form to your nearest TD Bank and receive $10 in a new or existing TD Simple Savings account. 

Local Libraries
Most local libraries offer a robust summer reading program; and this year, many will focus on space travel to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first man on the moon.


Free Movie Tickets, Popcorn, More


Free Ticket Offers:

Twizzler- Free movie ticket 

Subway: Free Child's Movie Ticket

Quaker- Free Movie Tickets

Dr.Pepper- Free Movie Tickets


Cheap and free summer movies for 2019 are starting to come in. Check back often for more updates!

AMC's Summer Movie Camp 2019

AMC movie theaters are showing some cheap summer movies this year for kids and families.

The tickets are $4 per child, which may sound steep, but in addition to the ticket, they'll get a kid's popcorn, fountain drink, and FrootiTooti fruit snacks. 

The movies are on Wednesday mornings at 10:00 a.m. starting in June. Scroll to the bottom of the AMC Summer Movie Camp webpage and for a list of participating theaters. Click on the theater for the movie schedule.

Movies showing this summer include:

  • Trolls
  • The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part
  • Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation
  • Peter Rabbit
  • Teen Titans Go! To the Movies
  • Wonder Park
  • Smallfoot
  • How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World
  • The House With a Clock In Its Walls

Harkins Theatres Summer Movie Fun 2019

Paul L. McCord Jr./Flickr

Harkins movie theatres are showing cheaps kids movies this summer for 10 weeks at less than $1 per film price, for their annual summer movie fun program.

Day and time of the summer movies depend on your specific location but they start around the end of May to the beginning of June. Contact your local theater for specific location details.

Here's what's playing this summer:

  • Happy Feet
  • How to Train Your Dragons: The Hidden World
  • Despicable Me 2
  • Hotel Transvalnyia 3: Summer Vacation
  • Small Foot
  • The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
  • Sherlock Gnomes
  • Trolls
  • Penguins of Madagascar
  • Shrek

Classic Cinemas' Wednesday Morning Movie Series 2019

Jeff Mendelson / EyeEm/Getty Images

Classic Cinemas is having their annual Wednesday morning movie series this summer June 5 - August 7.

Admission is $1 and the movie starts at 10:00 a.m. Wednesday mornings. Doors open at 9:00 a.m. and there will be characters, games, and activities.

If you have a group of 15 or more you can make a group reservation to ensure your spot.

  • June 5: Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero
  • June 12: Trolls
  • June 19: Teen Titans Go! To the Movies
  • June 26: Smallfoot
  • July 3: Dr. Seuss' The Lorax
  • July 10: Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation
  • July 17: The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
  • July 24: Dr. Suess' The Grinch
  • July 31: Surprise Movie 1
  • August 7: Surprise Movie 2

Cheap Summer Movies for Kids at Metropolitan Theaters 2019

altrendo images / Getty Images

Metropolitan Theatres is having a summer kids film series on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, or just Wednesdays depending on your location, June 11 - August 13, 2019.

Admission is $2 and all shows are at 10:00 a.m. Here's the schedule:

  • June 11: The Secret Life of Pets
  • June 18: Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation
  • June 25: Peter Rabbit
  • July 2: Rise of the Guardians
  • July 9: How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World
  • July 16: Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2
  • July 23: Dr. Suess' The Grinch
  • July 30: Minions
  • August 6: Smallfoot
  • August 13: Sing

Ultra Star Cinemas Kids' Summer Series 2019

For $1 you can see a movie at Ultra Star Cinemas this summer. They play Monday through Friday at 9:30 a.m.

Days and movies that are available vary from theater to theater. Check with your local theater for the most recent movie schedule. Here are the movies that they'll be playing this summer:

  • Week 1: Smurfs: The Lost Village
  • Week 2: The Boss Baby
  • Week 3: The Lego Ninjago Movie
  • Week 4: Despicable Me 3
  • Week 5: Sing
  • Week 6: Ferdinand
  • Week 7: The Emoji Movie
  • Week 8: Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie
  • Week 9: Paddington 2
  • Week 10: Kubo & The Two Strings

Megaplex Theaters 2019 Kids Summer Movies

Megaplex Theatres are showing cheap summer movies for kids and it will only cost you $10 for a pass that will get you into all 10 movies. You can also choose to buy individual tickets for $1.50 each. The movies start the end of May and wrap up in August.

You'll need to check with your favorite Megaplex location for the schedule of movie times. 

Movies that they're showing this year include:

  • Week 1: Small Foot
  • Week 2: Paddington 2
  • Week 3: Teen Titans Go! to the Movies
  • Week 4: The Iron Giant
  • Week 5: Peter Rabbit
  • Week 6: Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation
  • Week 7: Sherlock Gnomes
  • Week 8: The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
  • Week 9: How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World
  • Week 10: Wonder Park

Phoenix Big Cinemas Free Summer Movies 2019

Every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday mornings this summer you can visit Phoenix Big Cinemas to watch free summer movies for kids as well as the entire family.

There's a huge list of G and PG-rated movies playing this year at Phoenix Big Cinemas and you'll need to check with your local Phoenix Big Cinema for the location-specific schedule. Here's what's playing:

  • Smallfoot
  • The Log Movie
  • Teen Titans Go! To the Movies
  • Curious George
  • Shrek
  • Puss in Boots
  • Smurfs: The Lost Village
  • The Emoji Movie
  • Peter Rabbit
  • Trolls
  • The Lorax
  • Despicable Me
  • Despicable Me 2
  • Despicable Me 3
  • Minions
  • Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie
  • Sing
  • The Secret Life of Pets
  • Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation
  • How to Train Your Dragons: The Hidden World
  • The Emoji Movie

Cobb Theaters Kids Free Summer Movies 2019

Cobb Theaters also has a free summer movie program at many of their locations running June through the beginning of August. The movies start at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursdays.

The free summer movies for 2019 include Smallfoot, Dr. Suess' The Grinch, Teen Titans Go! To The Movies, Penguins of Madagascar, Paddington 2, Curious George, Hotel Transylvania 3, Peter Rabbit, Emjoi Move, Madagascar, Smurfs: The Lost Village, Home, Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, Minions, How to Train Your Dragon: Hidden World, and Captain Underpants.

You'll need to first select the Cobb Theater near you, and then the "Free Summer Kids Shows" link to the left to view the schedule.

Paragon Theaters Free Summer Movies 2019

Paragon Theaters will have free summer movies at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, running from June 11 through August 8, 2019.

These are the free movies available this year. Seating is first come, first served. 

To be announced.

Regal's Summer Movie Express

Regal movie theaters (as well as United Artists and Edwards theaters) are showing almost free summer movies for kids June through August.

Showtimes are 10:00 a.m. every Tuesday and Wednesday and cost $1. There's a full listing of Regal's summer movies for kids so you can plan out which ones you want to see.

Cinemark's Summer Movie Clubhouse

During the months of June and August, Cinemark will be showing cheap summer movies that the kids will love.

Cinemark Summer Movie Clubhouse 2018 will show  G and PG movies including Boss Baby, Smurfs: The Lost Village, The LEGO Ninjago Movie, Storks, The Nut Job 2, My Little Pony, Ferdinand, Paddington 2, Captian Underpants, and The Emoji Movie.

Tickets are $1 per show or $5 for all ten movies. You'll want to check with your local Cinemark to find out which days and times the movies are playing.


DIY Traditional New England Clam Bake

Today, typical clambake fare includes lobster, clams, potatoes, and corn, wrapped and steamed in seaweed (a menu and preparation similar to that of ancestors). Spending a day on the beach recreating this American pastime makes the perfect top off to your beach vacation. 

Digging the Pit

Before hosting a clambake, make sure it's legal to cook on your preferred beach. Then, invite tons of friends and family and start digging. The ideal pit size for accommodating your various crustaceans and veggies should measure approximately 3-feet deep and 4 to 5 feet in diameter. Once the pit is dug, line the bottom of your pit with large stones that are 6 to 8 inches around. Tackle this preparation in the early morning, before the sun is high and the sand is hot. 

Building the Fire

Next, build a fire on top of the rocks using hardwood you brought from home, bought from a general store, or collected on the beach. Driftwood also works well in a pinch. Allow your fire to burn for several hours (and most of the afternoon), re-stoking it, as needed. In the final hour before cooking, as a hack, add charcoal to your bed of embers to ensure ample heat for cooking your food. If you choose to omit the charcoal, test your heat source by splashing water on the rocks—the water should sizzle and evaporate upon contact. When your fire dies down to just embers and charcoal, it's ready to cook on. Rake out any extra wood and ash, and then cover the hot rocks and charcoal with a 3-inch layer of wet seaweed.

Preparing the Food

The quantity of food you cook depends on the crowd size. An intimate feed for 6 to 8 people calls for at least one 1 1/4-pound lobster per person, 2 pounds new potatoes, 6 pounds littleneck or cherrystone clams, and 1 ear of corn per person (husk on). If you're expecting more, bump up the quantities to the sufficient amount of food needed—your fire pit can handle it. Purchase your lobster and clams live, and on the day of cooking, and keep them chilled until you're ready to steam them. Rinse and scrub the clams in a sink, prior to cooking, and wash and pierce the potatoes with a knife. Then, wrap the corn and potatoes individually in foil and load all the food items into a cheesecloth sack, placing it on top of the embers. Cover the food with another 2 inches of wet seaweed and watch it steam.

(Note: Have a few buckets of seawater on hand to drizzle over the pit for a good steam. Having water available also serves as a safety precaution, in the event of a fire gone out of control.) 

Steaming and Serving the Meal

Cover the entire pit with a burlap sack or large piece of canvas that has been soaked in seawater. Secure the sides of the sack with heavy rocks or sand to seal in the steam. Let the entire ensemble cook for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours. And don't forget to melt 1 pound of butter for dipping. This can be done in a pot at the edge of your pit or at home on the stove, prior to serving. 

When done, lobsters will turn red, clamshells will open, and potatoes should be easily pierced with a fork. Use oven mitts or leather fire gloves to remove the food from the pit. Place the food sack on a tarp in the sand or on a picnic table and serve it buffet style, with individual cups of melted butter. Accompany your meal with cold beer, white wine, or Prosecco.


DIY Hot Dog Bar

What a fun idea! Set up a DIY hot dog bar for your next bbq or party! 
This theme is super easy to pull together. Aside from the shopping, which we did most of the day before, this entire theme was put together & shot in a single day – including the design of the printables!
Target and Walmart are great sources for BBQ supplies. Be sure to check the dollar section first.
  • chili
  • corn chips 
  • shredded cheddar cheese
  • guacamole
  • diced onions
  • pickle spears
  • tomato slices
  • mustard
  • hot peppers
  • sweet peppers
  • coleslaw
  • deli mustard
  • ketchup

This was more than enough and offered guests a range of combinations to choose from.


(click on a link to download the high-res pdfs. ENJOY!)

– Blank Food Labels (can also be used as Place Cards)
– Water Bottle Labels
– “Drink Up” Sign
– Hot Dog Recipe Signs
– “Make Your Own Hot Dog” Sign





Build Your Own Burger Bar


The possibilities for toppings are almost endless! How big or small you want your options to be is totally up to you. Have your buns, hamburger patties, and toppings spread out on a big buffet table so your guests can choose what they like. Have the table placed next to the grill if you’d like to serve the patties as they’re done cooking. 

Here are some topping ideas!


  • Cheddar
  • Swiss
  • Pepper Jack
  • Blue


  • Lettuce
  • Tomatoes
  • Avocado
  • Red onions
  • Caramelized onions
  • Sauteed mushrooms
  • Bacon
  • Pickles
  • Jalapeño peppers


  • Mayonnaise
  • Yellow mustard
  • Dijon mustard
  • Ketchup
  • Ranch
  • BBQ sauce