WISCONSIN RAPIDS, Wis., March 4, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- It wasn't soccer or basketball. It wasn't band or choir. Yet, hundreds of thousands of students showed up for practice – reading practice. U.S. students set a new national record, reading 4.4 million books in the days and hours leading up to "Read The Most From Coast To Coast" on March 1. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20001108/RENAISSANCELOGO) Now in its second year, Renaissance Learning's Read The Most From Coast To Coast challenges students to engage in valuable reading practice while topping the record for the number of Accelerated Reader Quizzes taken in one day. More than 29,000 educators registered for this year's quiz-taking challenge. Using Accelerated Reader's computer-based quizzes, which assess and provide immediate feedback on students' reading comprehension, the Web-based program tracked the number of quizzes passed and instantly shared the results on a live counter. This year, students passed a record 4,409,662 quizzes, shattering last year's total of 3,581,992. "Tracking students' progress in real time provided a fun way to motivate students as they took part in Read The Most From Coast To Coast," said Jack Lynch, chief executive officer, Renaissance Learning. "The tremendous participation this year shows how technology can bring new enthusiasm to learning while providing educators with critical instant feedback. Reading practice is so important, not only to help students develop a joy for reading, but to help them learn to read widely and deeply while building background knowledge essential for college and career readiness." The most widely used reading practice program in U.S. schools, Accelerated Reader provides access to more than 150,000 quizzes, more than half for non-fiction books. The immediate feedback helps educators monitor reading practice and assess progress with reports at the student, grade, school, and district levels. Educators use this data for timely intervention, guiding reading practice, setting goals, and communicating progress with parents.