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Our little bookworm makes his way to the Northwest as several Idaho schools adopt book vending machines into their halls. With spring right around the corner, this Inchy story comes blooming out of the gem state.

Sweeping Through Boise

Since 2020, a number of Idaho schools have installed book vending machines as a way to allow kids to access books through the pandemic. Due to strict COVID policies, many schools did not allow kids to take library books home. Inchy offered an alternative, allowing kids to keep their hard earned books forever.

Lakevue Elementary—located in Nampa, as well as Lewis and Clark Elementary and Wilson Elementary in Caldwell have all installed an Inchy unit over the past few years. According to Nampa School District director of communications Kathleen Tuck, Snake Valley Elementary is also looking into ordering their own machine. It would seem that kids across the Boise area are getting to enjoy the act of reading through their own scholastic book vending machines.

A chance for teachers and students to connect

Jenn Eardley, a librarian at Lakevue described Inchy as “a relationship-building tool”. She continued by saying that it allows students and teachers to talk and engage with each other as they look through and choose their books.

Eardley contributes to this community building by providing teachers with the gold tokens needed to use the machines. Teachers may then award students with the tokens as they see fit. They are generally given as rewards for good performance, exceptional behavior, or just as a “pick-me-up”.

Eardley is also responsible for collecting feedback about the machines from students and faculty. One such instance she shared was “I work with a student who has overwhelming odds. His perseverance and cheerfulness is an incentive to others. When he got his book, he asked, ‘Are you sure this is mine? I’ve never had such a big present!’”.

A custom Inchy offers more options

Lakevue began their journey by offering leftover books from previous school events. They have since switched over to ordering book bundles from the Scholastic publishing company. The typical book vending machine can carry about 20 unique titles and 300 total books. Lakevue however, was also proactive in ordering a custom book vending machine with varying tray sizes, allowing them to offer a wider variety of books. Their catalog ranges from classics such as “Old Yeller”, to more modern titles like the “The Bad Guys” series.

Pick up your own

Whether or not you live in Boise, Nampa, Caldwell or anywhere else in Idaho, a book vending machine is a great way to introduce students to the love of reading. While the standard model is exceptional, a custom book vending machine like Lakevue’s may be better able to cater to your students’ needs. Regardless of your preference we here at GVG are determined to provide you with the best service possible. To order or to learn more, feel free to contact us here and be sure to keep up with our social media feed for more Inchy updates!