Target Read With Me (iPad Giveaway!)

I‘m excited to announce that Simple Kids is joining in to support Target’s reading initiative, Target Read With Me. Target’s goal is to launch a national conversation about the importance of reading with children and the critical role parents and caring adults play in nurturing a love of reading among children.

This giveaway is now closed.  The winner will be announced Wednesday, January 19.  Thank you!

Focusing on a goal of helping U.S. kids read proficiently by the end of third grade, Target is asking people to make a pledge to make time for reading to the children in their lives.

Target is asking you to make a commitment to reading with your kids on a regular basis.

“Whether that means starting each day by exploring the newspaper, being a reading buddy in your community, or reading an extra bedtime story on the weekends, every page is a step toward success.”- Target website

Target is helping adults make this commitment with resources and reading tips for pre-K to ages 4th grade and up on their website.  They’ve also got a pdf file with tips for a Family Reading Night.

By the end of 2015, Target plans to donate more than $500 million to support education, doubling its support to date, for a total of more than $1 billion.  And, you can do your part by taking the pledge to read to the kids in your life.  When when you take the pledge, Target will donate books to kids in need, donating up to 2 million age-appropriate books.

I know from past conversations we’ve had on this blog that reading to our children is important to Simple Kids readers.  I’m asking you guys to join in me in taking the Read With Me pledge.

Reader Sweepstakes – iPad Giveaway

To help spread the word about the Read With Me pledge, Target has asked Simple Kids to host a sweepstakes.

Prize: Target is offering one Simple Kids winner a Target Read With Me Prize Package consisting of a 16 GB iPad with Wi-Fi for reading books online, along with a selection of age-appropriate books.

To Enter: Leave a comment about your favorite children’s book and why you feel reading to kids is important. This giveaway is now closed.  Thank you!

The Fine Print

This sweepstakes is only open to U.S. residents 18 years or older. A winning commenter will be drawn at random after the sweepstakes closes on Tuesday, January 18th at Midnight EST. The winner will receive a 16GB Wi-Fi enabled iPad and a selection of children’s books, a prize package valued up to $599. After the winner is notified, he or she has 48 hours to respond with their mailing address, phone number and ages of their children, so that Target can ship the prize and select books appropriate for their children. If the winner does not reply in that time frame, he or she forfeits the prize and another winner will be drawn at random. Please note that we cannot ship product to a P.O. Box.  Thank you to Target for providing this prize package. Also, you should know that I was given a Target gift card for facilitating this giveaway.

This sweepstakes is open to U.S. residents 18 years or older. The sweepstakes closes on Tuesday, January 18th, 2011 at Midnight EST. Good luck!

About Kara

Kara Fleck is the editor of Simple Kids. She is a small town mama, writer, knitter, bookworm, and hooligan. Kara lives in Indiana with her husband Christopher and their four children Jillian, Max, Lucy, and Amelia. You can find more of her writing at

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  1. What a great thing to get excited about! I’m not sure what my *favorite* book is to read to the kids. I like chapter books that we can read a little of each day…building suspense! I also enjoy reading Shel Silverstein with them. And, as their learning to read on their own, I love reading books that are their level and we can take turns reading the words.

    Reading opens words of possibilities and learning. Plus it’s a wonderful way to begin conversations, share times with your kids, or just laugh together.
    Annie´s latest post: Just a Little FYI

  2. My daughter just turned three and she loves to reach for IF ANIMALS KISSED GOODNIGHT by Ann Whitford Paul, with charming illustrations by David Walker. My daughter has a speech delay, and yet the rhythm of this book has helped her tremendously. Plus it’s fun to read out loud; the cadence and animal sounds make it perfect for acting out. I believe that reading is important because it is the key to everything there is to know, and for children it’s an excellent way to improve language skills. I can’t imagine life without reading, and I’m delighted my daughter has taken to it as well.

  3. My favorite children’s book? There are so many to pick from. Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, all the Dr. Suess books, any of Beverly Cleary’s books.

    I love getting to read these to my kids. To see them get excited about a story is wonderful. I love to show them new things and ideas without ever leaving the couch. I love reading a chapter in a book and have them asking for more. Reading not only teaches them to love books but it gives us time together where everyone is excited to be together.

  4. Everyone in my house loves Goodnight Moon. My Mother read it to me as a child, and I read it to my boys. It has helped get babies into sleeping routines, as we not only say goodnight to the things in the book, but we also say goodnight to things around the house. It is also the first book that my oldest could read on his own (although he may have just memorized it… :-) )
    Reading to children not only strengthens the bond you and your children have (who doesn’t love snuggle time with mom or Dad?), but I really believe that it helps your children to become readers too. I know that my love of books was given to me by my mother because she encouraged me to read everything that I could get my little hands on and also read to me anything that interested me.

  5. We are a library visiting bookshelf overflowing family who loves to read! One of my all time favorite reads for my kids in Dr. Seuss’ “Oh The Places You’ll Go”. A great book full of rhythm, rhyme and dreams. It is great for our littleest who loves the pictures, the color and the sounds of the pattern and timing of the book, while I know that our oldest is absorbing the ideas that you are only limited by your dreams!

  6. My favorite children’s book (well…my son’s favorite) is Llama Llama Red Pajama. He loves to hear it several times a day. We love the other Llama Llama books as well. My children are all avid readers. Reading has helped them improve their vocabulary and taught them so many things. It is so important to instill a love of reading in small children.

  7. Hanna DeMaster says:

    It’s hard to choose just one favorite children’s book! We’ve currently been reading the Mercer Meyer books (they were a great way to introduce the idea of a new baby and a baby brother). Reading is so important for building vocabulary and imagination.

  8. I have a million favorite children’s book but I suppose my top two favorites is Elmer the Elephant. I love all his colors and how he is different than all the other elephants. I also love the Spot flap books for toddlers. I used to read them to my daughter when she was little and now that she is expecting a baby soon – I bought a new Spot the Dog book for the baby to enjoy:)
    Deborah´s latest post: Making colorful and scented rice for preschool

  9. Green Eggs, and Ham is the favorite in my house.
    I have three children,and I take an hour and a half every night to read to my children. I read to them each for 30 minutes a night. Reading to children, no matter what age is so important.

  10. My favorite book to read my son has been the goodnight book where you put all the animals in their beds to rest. It was a hand me down from a friend.

    I think it’s important, esp for babies and toddlers, for their language development.

  11. Wow, sweet giveaway. Favorite childrens book is a TOUGH one! I think my current favorite is the Magic Treehouse Series. From my own growing up years, I’d have to say any Amelia Bedelia book.

    I’ve been reading with my 16 month old son more lately because he doesn’t use words much, but he will make animal noises, esp. when reading. So, my hope is that the more we read, the more he’ll be interested in talking and it seems like he’s improving since we’ve started reading more.
    Nisha @ Healthy Mom’s Kitchen´s latest post: Family Friendly Weight Loss Menu Plan

  12. Reading with kiddos is important for two main reasons, I think. First, it creates a love of books and reading, inspiring a child to want to read & create their own stories. Second, the memories. The first thing that comes to mind when I think “what is my favorite children’s book?” is the Little House on the Prairie Series. My mom read the whole series over and over when I was growing up…until my sisters and I were old enough to read them ourselves. The set is quite worn out now but those memories will last a lifetime!

  13. Amber Benjamin says:

    I think my favorite book to read to my boys especially my youngest is: Chicka Chicka Boom Boom or Brown Bear Brown Bear What Do You See? For my older boy we just started (again) the Harry Potter Series…So I guess honestly I don’t have one favorite book to read to my children, it really depends on their age and what they want to listen to :)

  14. It’s hard to choose a favorite children’s book! Our favorites right now are the Kevin Henkes book. My son just started Kindergarten this year, and we have had fun reading his books together – Chrysanthemum, Julius, Baby of the World, Owen, etc.
    Reading with my children helps them to develop a love for reading, creates great special times together, and opens times for discussion about the book and the story and even life lessons.

  15. I just love books! I could not pick just one favorite. But, one of my favorite older kids books is the Fablehaven series by Brandon Mull. One of my favorite children’s picture books is The Big Hungry Bear, The Little Mouse and the Red Ripe Strawberry. I also love Don’t let Pigeon Drive the Bus!

  16. One of my favorite board books is I Love You, Stinky Face ( Special memories with that one. :-)

  17. What a tough decision. We have so many favorites at our house. My girls always love Socks for Supper by Jack Kent and The Monster at the End of this Book. My parents always made reading a priority for us when we were kids and as a result all of us love to read. I hope to pass that love of reading on to my girls.
    Monica´s latest post: Favorites

  18. For picture books, my older kids loved Chicka Chicka Boom Boom when they were little, as well as Jamberry, The Little Mouse The Red Ripe Strawberry and the Big Hungry Bear, and The Napping House. My youngest daughter loves the Pinkalicious books and any books with pink or princesses in them. Now my older two love the Warriors series. Reading has always been a huge part of my life and I love that I can pass on that love to my children.

  19. I love reading and hope to encourage the same passion in my son by reading with him and around him. One of my favorites right now is, I Took the Moon for a Walk. However, my son would prefer something about cars and trucks..

  20. Anything by Eric Carle. His books incorporate so many concepts, from learning basics like counting and days of the week, to deeper ones regarding self-esteem and hard work. Yet the stories and illustrations are easy to understand for young children.

  21. I love reading to my daughter because it gives us so much to talk about and time to connect. I learn more about how she sees the world as I watch her engage in the story and as she is starting to ‘read’ the books back to me at age two. Some favorites: Duck and Goose by Tad Hills, Kiss Kiss, Peter Rabbit, and the Rhyme Time Story Bible.

  22. One of my favorites is Goodnight Moon. Ten in the Bed, We’re Going on a Bear Hunt, and Make Way for Ducklings are also popular around here! It’s important to read to children because it exposes them to new places, people, things, animals, vocabulary–I’ve learned so much by reading!

  23. I love Not Norman, reading to our kids is so important as it helps to aid in their love for reading!

  24. We love to read together because no matter how the day is going, everything is better when we curl up with some books. Our favorite is the little house on prairie series.

  25. I love Leaf Man by Lois Elhert because I think the pictures are some of the most vibrant I have ever seen! Reading is perhaps the most important thing you can teach a child because it can open the door to absolutely everything else a child could want to do or be. Plus reading with my kids is a great way to bond with them! I love watching them make a connection in real life to so something we have read!

  26. Do I have to pick just one favorite? I could probably rattle off ten favorites right off the top of my head. I guess a current favorite right now is “Mr. Brown Can Moo” by Dr. Seuss. My toddler and I both love it. As far as why reading is important, there are so many reasons but I think the biggest one is that reading opens up worlds that would otherwise be unavailable to you. You can visit fantasy worlds, or learn more about our own world. You can take a break from your problems and it encourages you to think up your own new worlds.
    Wendy´s latest post: The Week in Bentos- January 10-14- 2011

  27. I LOVE reading Dr. Seuss to my kids, and I’d say that my favorite is Horton Hears a Who. I love the message within that story…that believing in yourself and doing good for others is something to strive for, against all odds.

    And to me, reading is important because it prepares children for all facets of life. It encourages creativity, learning, problem-solving…the works. Reading is the foundation of knowledge. And who doesn’t want their kids to be smart?
    Shannon @ AnchorMommy´s latest post: Sleeping through the night Bah!

  28. Becka Long says:

    Favorite Childrens Book: The Tallest of Smalls by Max Lucado, a book my grandma bought for my 1 year old son for Christmas. It is a great story about not getting caught up in people pleasing and wanting to look good to everyone else. Just love, love, love it.

  29. One favorite? How about our current favorite? My four year old has been requesting Green Eyes recently. This week we painted a box red, found a pink blanket, and even tried sleeping in the box today. We imagined that the bedroom ceiling was the clear, blue sky, and the boring carpet was cool, green grass. This one book, a gift from grandma, has sparked so much play in our home over the last two weeks!

    Reading is important in our family because the experience lays the ground work for so many areas of life. I am thrilled that both of my children love to read with me!

  30. My 3 year old daughter’s current favorites are Giraffes Can’t Dance and The Gruffalo. She especially enjoys her fathers reading to her while she is snuggling him.
    Reading hours create wonderful opportunity to strength our bonding and it really helps your children to become future’s good readers.

  31. Beth Baker says:

    My daughter is almost 14 months but she’s starting to bring me books to read to her! She loves Peek-A-Who and Kiss Goodnight. It’s important for me that we start reading to her early so that we make it a daily habit. I love how reading opens the imagination and allows you to visit places and see things you otherwise wouldn’t.

  32. Wow! What a great giveaway! We have so many favorite kids books! If I had to choose one I would choose One Morning in Maine (and Blueberries for Sal). We love Robert McCloskey! The illustrations are amazing and the stories even better.

    I have 3 kids under 5 and all love to listen to books. It is such a sweet time for all of us when we can curl up on the sofa under a blanket with a stack of books. So much of our day seems to be hustle bustle but this quiet time together is so peaceful and restorative. I treasure it so much.

  33. It’s hard to pick one favorite book, but two of my recent favorite books to read to my kids have been “The Year of Miss Agnes” and “Red Sails to Capri”. Both were really fun to read and had great lessons in them.

    I think reading to kids is important because they are actively using their imaginations while you are reading to them, creating pictures of the characters and scenes in their minds. It is also one of the most effective ways of teaching them to read.

    Thank you for offering this amazing giveaway!

  34. My fave books to read ar Winnie the Pooh chapter books, but my kindergartener is loving Harry potter. I have a nearly six yo and a nearly one yo. This is great! Reading is so crucial for imagination

  35. My favorite children’s book would have to be the Little House on the Prairie series, my almost 2 year old daughter can’t get enough of The Real Mother Goose, and my 11 year old stepdaughter LOVES the Percy Jackson series!
    Reading together is a time to just relax an reconnect in our house, We all love books!

  36. I love reading together with my girls. It’s so empowering for them to read and expand their base of knowledge. I hope to never stop learning with them.

    • Oops, left out the favorite books…We are currently making our way through the Magic Tree House series.

  37. My favorite bookt or ead to my son is Margaret Wise Brown’s “Big Red Barn.” My favorite one to read to my daughter is “Bread and Jam for Frances.”

  38. My 2 year old and I have been enjoying reading Jamberry, Dr. Suess books, and other books that rhyme. Reading daily with your child is not only important for your little one’s pre-reading skills but also for their vocabulary and overall language development. My son always amazes me with the words he recalls from stories!

  39. I can list our “current” favorites – since they seem to change with my children. My daughter (5) currently loves To Be a Princess: The Fascinating Lives of Real Princesses and we read part of it every night, my older son (2) loves the How Do Dinosaurs series, and our baby boy (4 months) gets a selection by one of the older children – normally Goodnight Moon or a Curious George book. We also love Strega Nona!

    My own favorites include, The Cow Who Fell in the Canal, Katy and the Big Snow, A Story About Ping, A Horse Alphabet, and Clifford books!

    As a family, we are reading A Land Remembered, The Burgess Bird Book for Children and The Count of Monte Cristo. We finished Swiss Family Robinson and loved that one, too!

    How do you pick just a few???

  40. We read all the time. One of our favorites is “Tumble Bumble.” My 3yo loves to fill in the words. She also loves “Brown Bear, Brown Bear” and “Caps for Sale.” Her first book was “That’s Not My Fairy.”

    I have a whole library of classic chapter books waiting for when she’s old enough.

  41. My favorite children’s book is the Frog and Toad Treasury. Reading to kids instills a love for learning in them at an early age.
    gina´s latest post: Wisdom

  42. I’m excited to hear about this! I will be sharing this with my parents for sure!
    My favorite children’s books… hmm.. There are so many good ones! I love “Don’t like the duck drive the bus” and “Where the Wild Things are”. For older kids “Miss Nelson is Missing”, “The Z was zapped” and “Zen Shorts”.
    Reading is important because it is your access to the world!

  43. My favorite children’s books are the ones that live on and on through the years. The ones that I loved as a kid, and that my children now love as well. Blueberries for Sal, Corduroy, Where the Wild Things Are, The Snowy Day…I could go on and on! Something about these books transcends the decades, which I think is really special.

    I think that reading with children is crucial, not only for their own developing reading abilities but also for the relationship between caregiver and child. I love those moments every night, snuggled up warm under the blankets next to my daughter, laughing and whispering and discussing the books we’re reading. I will carry those memories with me always.

  44. My favorite children’s book has to be Ox-Cart Man. I just love the story, the making and the illustrations! Reading is so important so that children can thrive not only with school work, but with confidence, and develop new interests (and learn MORE about those interests) with the aid of reading about them!
    Sarah M
    Sarah M´s latest post: This Moment

  45. great contest!

    my absolute fave books as an elementary kid were any and all books by Patricia M. St. John. especially “the tanglewood’s secret.” these books took me places. i entered into the stories, explored with the characters. i was so taken with these books that i boldly wrote Mrs. St. John as a fifth grader, telling her how wonderful her books were and how i wanted to write books like her someday. she wrote me back, and included an autographed copy of The Tanglewood’s Secret.

    reading opened up a world for me i would have never discovered otherwise. i was an only child and reading allowed me to “experience” what life was like with siblings. reading took me all over the world… to australia, back in time to historical events and so much more. i collect books, now, for my own daughters and i look for books that will do the same for them… books that will take them on adventures even now that none of us could imagine.
    chelsea´s latest post: Christmas and the New Year…

  46. Charlotte’s Web? No way I can pick just one favorite, but that’s the first really good one that came to mind. My kids’ favorite right now is probably Llama, Llama, Red Pajama. I love reading to them (ages 3, 2, and 2) because of the way they engage and absorb. It’s so fun, and so important. I love hearing that “again!” at the end of a good story!

  47. I’m not sure I could choose just one favorite children’s book. One of my favorites is The Napping House. Not only do I love the story, but the illustrations are beautiful. My children are 5 & 7 and we are currently reading the Little House series aloud. We LOVE them!
    Of course, there are the proven positive outcomes to reading to young children, but my favorite thing about reading to young children is that it allows them to explore worlds they may never have a chance to experience otherwise. For instance, while reading the Little House series, my children are constantly comparing our life today to that of the Ingalls family.

  48. I can’t pick an absolute favorite children’s book! I LOVE me some children’s books.

    Right now we are reading aloud Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card and of course, we always read I Love You More!

  49. There are so many books to choose from. I love reading books to my kids, I have really seen that reading with them and to the kids in their classrooms really help with many aspects in their life, just the ability to read for themselves comes from reading to them. Thanks for the giveaway. Target is such a great company.
    Lindsey G´s latest post: -Sunday-

  50. My daughter’s (16m) favorite books are “The Belly Button Book” by Sandra Boynton and “We’re Going on a Bear Hunt” by Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury. She seems to be going through a phase where she’s bringing books to anyone who will pay her attention even if it’s all day long.

    I think one of the responsibilities we have as parents is to encourage a love for reading. Making time to read to our children encourages the same habits throughout their lives. And I love our cuddle-time with a good book!


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