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Read Across America: Read-A-Thon & Other Top Activity Ideas

For schools across the country, Read Across America Week is a critical time to further student learning, inspire young readers and writers, and cultivate a love of reading. That's why it's so important to make the most of your Read Across America campaign and National Reading Month with effective and engaging reading programs like Read-A-Thon.

With Read-a-Thon's intuitive fundraising platform, you'll not only make reading fun and easy for your students, but you'll also raise thousands of dollars at the same time!

Explore how Read-a-Thon can supercharge your Read-a-Thon campaign.

Ready to celebrate Read Across America with a fun, literacy event that will raise you money to boot? Schedule a call with our team or sign up for Read-A-Thon today!

Learn the fundamentals of the Read Across America program.

Read Across America | Exploring the Basics

Read Across America celebrates the birthday of Dr. Seuss.

What is the Read Across America program?

The National Education Association (NEA) originally created Read Across America (RAA) to celebrate the birthday of Dr. Seuss, one of history's most successful children's writers and use it as a springboard to celebrate reading among children. Every March 2nd, NEA organizes a program that challenges children throughout the United States to spend the day reading.

Since the first Read Across America Day in 1998, the program has expanded to become a week-long event for many schools. In fact, the entire month of March has become National Reading Month, with ongoing campaigns that call for schools all over the U.S. to champion a love of reading for young learners.

What are the goals of RAA?

The goal of Read Across America was and continues to be to motivate children to read more. After all, reading is a vital part of childhood educational development. And with Dr. Seuss being such a recognizable children's author, it makes perfect sense to use him as a launching-off point to promote the event.

On top of that, a secondary goal of many schools' RAA programs is fundraising. With teachers, teenagers, librarians, politicians, actors, athletes, parents, grandparents, and countless others eager and inspired to promote childhood literacy, this reading program is the perfect time to roll out reading-centered fundraisers that raise money for student education.

How do you celebrate Read Across America?

Every school has its own unique approach to RAA. Some teams build in an extra few minutes of class time to read and learn about Dr. Seuss, while others put together an exciting week of class vs. class reading challenges, live book reading sessions, and school fundraising campaigns.

Of course, your school may not have the resources to go all out with your RAA program. However, any institution—from small preschool programs to bustling middle schools—can level up their RAA events with Read-a-Thon's simple, easy-to-use, and incredibly lucrative fundraising platform.

Learn about the best Read Across America program idea: Read-A-Thon fundraisers.

Read-a-Thon: The Best Read Across America Idea

Did you know that you can raise tens of thousands of dollars just by reading?

Schools often spend an unreasonable amount of time trying to raise funds for their different events and programs, only to come up short. That's where Read-a-Thon comes in—one of the fastest-growing school fundraisers in the world.

An Easy, Profitable, and Educational Fundraiser

The Read-a-Thon platform offers a simple, lucrative, and educational fundraising idea for schools.

Our Read-a-Thon program costs nothing to start and requires few to no volunteers, making it a perfect fit for any school fundraising team.

This makes a Read-a-Thon fundraiser a particularly good fit for your RAA program, as you can easily integrate it into the weeks leading up to and during Read Across America. After all, if your school is already focused on reading, then why not host a Read-a-Thon?

That's why so many principals and PTA groups are starting Read-A-Thons as their school fundraiser of choice.

The Best Read Across America Idea for Elementary Schools

The Read-a-Thon platform serves as particularly effective school fundraising idea for elementary schools.

Many elementary schools and school libraries search for more productive ways to raise money, particularly during the important school fundraising time offered by Read Across America.

Of course, it's difficult to engage young students in effective, educational fundraisers for your RAA. But as teachers set aside class time during the month of March, they're already doing most of the hard work required to hold a Read-a-Thon fundraiser.

The Read-a-Thon platform streamlines the rest of the fundraising process for staff members and students. Easily customizable donation pages, effortless marketing widgets, and even a virtual prize store are used to entice young readers to participate in your campaign—and have blast while doing so.

An Online Fundraising Program to Virtually Engage Students

Read-a-Thon is a highly engaging online fundraising program.

As we move forward into a brave new world of digital engagement, many schools are looking for hybrid or virtual tools to engage students remotely.

Our turnkey online fundraising program fills that need, creating a cost-effective, lucrative fundraising tool that anyone from tech-challenged teachers to elementary school students can use to engage readers wherever they are.

You can easily combine Read-a-Thon with your Read Across America program.

How to Combine Read-a-Thon and Read Across America

Incorporating Read-a-Thon fundraising with your RAA campaign is as simple as setting up the platform and then instructing students how to:

  • Log in to your campaign as participants.
  • Record the reading hours they're already accumulating during your RAA program.
  • Share their donation pages with friends, family members, and supporters.

However, how do you manage the fundraiser itself and ensure that you're engaging students, educating readers, and raising important funds for your cause?

All you have to do is follow four easy steps:

Complete your read-a-thon fundraiser in just four easy steps.
  1. Create your free Read-a-Thon account.
  2. Use our data tracking and reporting features to monitor your progress.
  3. Leverage our intuitive marketing tools to share and market your campaign.
  4. Continue to motivate your students and watch as your donations grow!

In no time at all and with minimal planning and investment, you'll be running your own powerful RAA Read-a-Thon fundraising campaign!

See What Some of Read-a-Thon's 5,000+ Users Have to Say

Hear what Zane North PTA has to say about their experience with Read-A-Thon!

Thank you to ALL of the Read-A-Thon crew, especially Tiffany and Colby, for your support, help, and willingness to help our Read-A-Thon fundraiser for Zane North PTA. It was very nice to work with such a great team and know our questions are always answered in such a short time with detailed answers. We look forward to working with you again next year for Read Across America Week!

Zane North PTA

Raised $13,765.00

Hear what Zane North PTA has to say about their experience with Read-a-thon!
East Brookfield Elementary loved their Read-a-Thon campaign for Read Across America!

Our school loved our Read-a-Thon! We are pleasantly surprised with how much money we raised in just two weeks. The communication through the website (especially the reports) was fabulous as was the color-copied personalized materials that were provided for each student. We could not have asked for anything more and plan on doing this again next year for our Read Across America Celebration in March.

East Brookfield Elementary

Raised $14,550.00

East Brookfield Elementary loved their Read-a-Thon campaign for Read Across America!

Other Valuable Read-a-Thon Resources

See how much money your library can raise with our Read-A-Thon calculator: Click Here

Get the answers to your basic questions in our Read-A-Thon FAQ section: Click Here

Get a brief explanation of how our Read-A-Thon system works: Click Here

Check out a sample prize store: Click Here

Consider these other great activity ideas to spice up your RAA program!

More Great Read Across America Activities, Ideas, & Tips

1. Organize Class vs Class Competitions

Gamify your RAA program and Read-a-Thon fundraising campaign by pitting classrooms head-to-head to see who reads more and raises more. In addition to items individual readers will be able to order for themselves in the Read-a-Thon prize store, you can host a party, create a special trophy, or organize some other glamorous reward for top-performing classes.

2. Seek Out Corporate Sponsorships

Corporate sponsorship opportunities are donations and gifts offered by businesses to support your campaign, in return for being able to promote themselves to your supporters through brand merchandising, public shout-outs, and other opportunities.

This is a great way to bring in more revenue for your campaign, increase your marketing potential, and create important community relationships for future fundraising endeavors.

3. Use Social Media for Reading Challenges

Beyond email and print materials, social media is another powerful tool to add to your Read Across America program's multichannel marketing arsenal. Additionally, it's a valuable tool to engage students and their supporters throughout your campaign!

For example, create reading challenge days through the month of March with small prizes and special hashtags students can use to evidence their participation, like a "#FairytaleFriday" that promotes reading fantastical storybooks

4. Bring in Guest Readers

Forge stronger relationships with community members and enchant students by inviting guest authors, performers, and speakers to read chapter or storybook excerpts to different classrooms throughout your RAA campaign.

5. Create a Book Scavenger Hunt

Infuse an element of healthy competition to your RAA program by challenging students to find books from home or your local libraries that meet certain criteria

For instance, you might have a "Tales from Another World" day where students are encouraged to discover stories about different cultures, countries, or even planets and then briefly present the book to the class to discuss what they learned.

Streamline Your RAA Program with Read-a-thon

Make the most of your Read Across America event with Read-a-Thon's simple, effective, and profitable fundraising platform.


Your school will not only be able to raise critical funds to go toward student education and the betterment of your institution, but you will also be able to educate, motivate, and inspire students as they move forward in their reading journeys.


Schedule a meeting or sign-up today to take advantage of our powerful RAA fundraising program.

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