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Getting kids excited about reading an actual book can be a challenge for parents and educators in this digital age. In our digital world, it's all about playing games on phones and watching videos. Getting a child to pick up a book and read can be difficult.

Harmony ISD is looking to change things and get kids interested in reading books thanks to the purchase of two unique vending machines. The book vending machines have age-appropriate books that kids can choose from and keep for themselves. These machines came about through a partnership with Credit Union of Texas in Gilmer and in addition to quite a bit of PTO fundraising efforts.

The new eye-catching vending machines will hopefully serve as encouragement for children to read. Harmony ISD PTO President, Katy Hall, tells KLTV 7,

Its really cool to give kids the opportunity to have a book at home that’s their’s, that they get to have ownership in and get to read it over and over and over again and relive those characters and its just special."

Elementary school kids will have access to one machine and the other will be located on the intermediate campus. Kids can purchase the books with special coins they earn through positive behavior in class and in elementary school, kids will get a coin on their birthday so they can choose a book as a birthday present.

Taking a look at the books the kids are holding, there are some pretty popular titles for them to choose from right now. 'The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe', books from the 'Harry Potter' series, and more. I am all for this because it is fun, encourages good behavior in class, and gets kids interested in reading. Plus, as a kid getting something from a vending machine is just awesome and a book will live with them nearly forever.

These book vending machines are catching on across East Texas, recently one popped up at Chandler Elementary in Kilgore thanks to a grant from the Greater Longview United Way 'Read To Succeed' program.

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