There were a number of comments left on my post called "Daddy, I want a book buck!" where I detailed how the school's reading incentive plan was distracting my daughter from her love for reading.
Here is a comment left by Jeffrey Wardlaw:
My 5th-grade son always has loved to read - independently and with others. He enjoyed just sitting alone in his room for long stretches of time reading for personal pleasure. It is one of the things that I and his mother are most proud of - his joy of reading.
This year, his grade level teachers instituted a new practice of requiring students to read a 100 minutes each week, at least 4 times a week, AND provide a written summary of what they read along with a personal reflection based on several writing prompts.
Knowing how my son would react to being "forced" to read, early in the school year, I voiced my concerns very strongly with the grade-level teachers, explaining that I believed their reading program would not foster a desire to read, but rather force reading to become just another piece of homework to be completed. Unfortunately, they did not agree with my reasoning, and have continued with the reading program.
As you can imagine, my son no longer reads for pleasure. For him, reading is now "work." Despite the best intentions of his teachers to get the students to read, by instituting measures of "accountability" and "assessment"(the teachers' words, not mine) into the assignment, they have crushed my son's and likely other students' desire to read.
So, incentivizing reading is not the only way to kill a love of reading. Just turn reading into "work" and watch the kids shut down.