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New ‘vending machine’ at Chamberlin Elementary gives children an incentive to do more reading.

Chamberlin librarian Hannah Clary stands next to the school's new book vending machine.

The days of getting a stale candy bar or lukewarm can of soda from a vending machine are over.

Today’s kids – particularly those at Chamberlin Elementary – can now retrieve books from the school’s new vending machine made possible by a grant from the Stephenville Education Foundation.

"Literacy is a topic that has been discussed for years,” Chamberlin librarian Hannah Clary told Beneath the Surface News. “Getting books into the hands of our students and families is one of my top concerns. Giving students a choice to what book they receive when visiting the vending machine will be motivating. Students will then take the book home and read it to their siblings, cousins and peers.

“The effects of this vending machine will ripple down generations. Because students do not have to return the book, it allows for the enjoyment of it to be unlimited.”

The vending machine will be used as a reward for good behavior and as an incentive to read. Students will earn a ticket for positive behaviors and displaying SISD’s core values.

After receiving a ticket, gold coins will be raffled off on Fridays during morning announcements.

Students will also receive a gold coin as a reading incentive when they accomplish a new reading certification in Accelerated Reader.

“Receiving a gold coin will allow a student to pick one book from the vending machine,” Hannah said. “Despite the name, ‘vending machine,’ our books will not be for sale. We don’t want financial barriers to prevent students from accessing books. Students will be able to keep the book and add it to their personal library at home.”

The Education Foundation has stocked the vending machine with new books, but it will be maintained by book donations from businesses and community members.

If you would like to make a donation, Chamberlin Elementary has a “wish list” on Amazon you can access by clicking here.

"First and second graders are learning to read; however, one day they will be reading to learn,” Hannah said. “Literacy is an integral part of our community and getting books into the hands of our students is crucial to our society.”


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