Building Better Minds

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No snacks here. This school vending machine sells books to improve reading skills.

Posted at 9:25 AM, Jun 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-01 09:25:21-04

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- Some Chesterfield County schools are using vending machines to get students excited about reading.

The machines are not filled with soda and snacks, but with books.

"Our students are able to use it just like they would use a vending machine for a Pepsi or something like that," Bensley Elementary School assistant principal Lyndsey Noel said.

The machine does not accept cash, but something even more valuable.

"They earn tokens," Noel said. "We track their progress with reading, how many books they read. And then when they reach a certain amount, they're able to get a token and on Fridays, they're able to select their books."

The students get to keep their books to help build a library at home.,

"It gives our kids access to books that some of them may not have been able to purchase on their own," reading specialist Angela Finch said. "Some of our friends don't have a library card."

The book vending machine does not just improve reading skills.

"We noticed that it helped increase motivation with our students because they would see other students getting that opportunity. And they would ask how do I do that," Noel said.

In those ways, the book vending machines are helping to build better minds.

Building Better Minds with Rob Cardwell airs every Wednesday at 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. on CBS 6 and is sponsored by Virginia Family Dentistry.



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