DALLAS - May 14, 2013 // PRNewswire // - The Pizza Hut® BOOK IT!® Program announced that it is again joining forces with best-selling author Jeff Kinney and his book series Diary of a Wimpy Kid for the 2013-14 school year. Diary of a Wimpy Kid, one of the most successful children's book series ever published, will be integrated into all BOOK IT! classroom materials, teacher printables and web creative at www.pizzahut.com/bookit. With this exciting partnership comes a new twist this year: one lucky BOOK IT! classroom will win a visit from Jeff Kinney !
"BOOK IT! along with Jeff Kinney and Diary of a Wimpy Kid are such strong advocates of working together to help develop a love of reading for school-age children," said Shelley Morehead , BOOK IT! Program administrator. "Teachers and students loved last year's BOOK IT! materials featuring Greg Heffley , the loveable youngster who has made Diary of a Wimpy Kid a sensation, so we're excited to feature him on our materials again this year. Jeff Kinney 's wonderful series has resonated with our BOOK IT! audience to truly make reading great."
The Diary of a Wimpy Kid series draws in all types of readers, including reluctant ones, through Kinney's trademark novel in cartoon format. Diary of a Wimpy Kid books have been on multiple national bestsellers lists since publication of the original volume in 2007. There are more than 87 million copies in print in 44 countries around the world. The BOOK IT! Program will kick off its 29th year ahead of Kinney's eighth book in the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series that is scheduled for release on November 5.
"For 29 years the BOOK IT! Program has been promoting children's literacy and getting kids excited about reading," said Jeff Kinney . "I'm thrilled to have Greg Heffley and Diary of a Wimpy Kid as a part of the program again and to encourage kids to discover magic between the pages of a book."
BOOK IT!, the longest-running corporate-supported reading incentive program in the country, was originally launched by Pizza Hut in 1985. Today, the program reaches more than 680,000 classrooms and 14 million children annually. Teachers and librarians set monthly reading goals and present students with a reading award certificate when goals are met. Students take the certificates to a Pizza Hut restaurant, where they are congratulated by a team member and given a free, one-topping Personal Pan Pizza®. There is no purchase necessary and the pizza can be taken to go.
Registration for the 2013-14 school year is open and the program begins in October.
The BOOK IT! Program is part of the "Share a Slice of Hope" movement at Pizza Hut. Share a Slice of Hope encourages consumers and Pizza Hut employees nationwide to help others through the company's philanthropic pillars: children's literacy and world hunger relief.
In 1985, Pizza Hut established the BOOK IT! National Reading Incentive Program to motivate children to read more and help them develop a lifelong love of reading. BOOK IT! is a six-month program for students in kindergarten through sixth grade. For more information, visit www.pizzahut.com/bookit or keep up with BOOK IT! via its social media outlets @BOOKITprogram Facebook.com/BOOKIT1985.
Published by Amulet Books, an imprint of ABRAMS, Diary of a Wimpy Kid books have sold more than 87 million copies in 44 countries in 39 languages around the world. Kinney was named to Time magazine's 100 most influential people list and his work has been widely praised for its ability to turn reluctant readers onto books. The series is a fixture on the USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, Publishers Weekly and The New York Times bestseller lists. Books in the series have won numerous awards voted on by students and teachers in schools around the globe.
Pizza Hut, a subsidiary of Yum! Brands, Inc. (NYSE: YUM), delivers more pizza, pasta and wings than any other restaurant in the world. The only pizza company to be named a top ten franchise in 2013 by Entrepreneur Magazine, Pizza Hut began 55 years ago in Wichita, Kansas, and today operates more than 10,000 restaurants in more than 90 countries. Pizza Hut also is the proprietor of the BOOK IT! Program, which is a long-standing children's literacy program used in more than 650,000 classrooms nationwide. In 2013, Pizza Hut is expected to surpass 4,000 WingStreet locations. To order online from Pizza Hut, visit PizzaHut.com.
SOURCE Pizza Hut