Prize rewards. The food industry has long used this tactic- think Cracker Jacks or cereal boxes, collectible yogurt lids, or hidden numbers on soda bottles that may be redeemed for BMX bikes or additional cans of soda. Marketing experts know all too well that the promise of a prize can be very titillating for the consumer, and can help provide the encouragement for them to eat, drink, or use their way through a specific product.
In my experiences as a special education teacher and reading specialist (and even as a parent!), I learned that the power of external motivators is just as effective for getting a child excited about learning as it is for getting consumers to choose a specific product. This sentiment is clearly echoed throughout the field of education where children are often rewarded with gold stars, “way to go” stickers, and decorative pencils.
In creating Laughing Giraffe Books, I found a unique way to couple my experiences as an educator with insights gleaned from the consumer industry, and put them to use in my mission of developing a love of reading in children. Our exclusive game and prize component is the result, and is an essential part of the Laughing Giraffe Books reading experience. And, the best part is that you can benefit from it in your own home!
Laughing Giraffe Books starts by offering only the most carefully selected book choices, both modern favorites and classics, which are guaranteed to appeal to children of all ages. Then, we compile them into collections based around favorite age and gender specific themes. This allows our customers to easily choose the most compelling books for the special children in their lives, and makes it significantly more likely that the ensuing reading experience will be a pleasurable one.
Next, we include our exclusive search-and-find game in every Book Bundle and Book of the Month collection that we offer. This fun peel- and-stick game contains a single question for each of the books contained in the collection. The game, and promise of a later prize, provides a compelling reason for children to open the books. And, because our books are so carefully selected, we are confident that once begun, the books will be enjoyed to the end.
The games are designed to be completed by any age, and with any level of help. Games accompanying the collections for the first year feature fun activities to complete with baby. The games for toddlers focus on locating easy to find pieces of information, where as the books for slightly older children ask them to look a little deeper. The games are also easily adapted so that they can be done independently or with varying degrees of help from an adult. Finally, by requiring a signature on the completed game board, we are providing parents with an additional opportunity to discuss the books, questions and answers with their children. These are very important steps in the promotion of a lifelong love of reading.
Finally, the prize. The promise of a fun, theme-related toy or game, is an effective way to encourage children- especially reluctant or struggling readers- to begin to enjoy books. The perfectly themed collections help to hold their interest in the books. The game encourages them to finish the books leading to a sense of pride in completing both the books and game and, most importantly, an understanding that books can be enjoyable. And finally, the anticipation of the arrival of the prize coupled with the enjoyment of receiving (in the mail!) and opening of the hard earned prize seals the deal.
During this process, with the help of all of the game and prize, and with each positive reading experience, the shift is made from reading for a prize (external motivator) to reading because it is enjoyable (internal motivator) and the foundation is set for developing a lifelong love of reading!
That is why Laughing Giraffe Books includes a game and prize with every collection!