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  • Writer's pictureValerie

The Summer Reading Challenge

How to challenge your kids to read during summer break.

The number one way to keep a child’s mind active is to let them eat Books, I mean read books, of course!!!!

But with today’s screen-glued instant gratification mentality. Getting our kids to read books is often a struggle.

The ideas on how to do this are numerous on Pinterest, and slightly overwhelming. So, I will let you in on what we do at our house.

We do book bingo and a 100 Book Challenge for each of my kiddos.

Okay, pick your jaw up off the floor.

If you break it down, most kids have 8-10 weeks of summer, so they have to read 10-12.5 books a week.

What counts as a book Valerie, this seems excessive.

Well, that depends on who’s reading and what they are reading.

I have three very active boys. A middle school reluctant dyslexic reader. A late elementary Book-a-hoic (like his mama, bless his HEART) And a second grader, at the beginning of his reading journey.

For my third grader, anything counts as a book for his book challenge. My goal for him is to continue to foster a love of reading. To explore books and stockpile them under his bed. I might have a running tab at the library. The one requirement for his challenge is one early chapter book just above his reading level. This challenges him and helps him explore new books and ideas to build confidence in his reading.

For my reluctant reader, almost everything counts. Graphic novels, picture books, early chapter books, and audiobooks fill most of his list. But to challenge him, I request two books in each set of ten to be on his reading level. This can often be a rub between us but it’s like getting him to eat his veggies. I know it is good for him and for his dyslexia to be exposed to familiar words.

For my Book-A-Holic, I have to challenge him more. He can read a 300-page book in twenty-four hours if he’s motivated. So, for every ten books that go on our challenge, he has to read five-chapter books. I am flexible with how long the chapter books are, because again the goal is fostering a love for reading.

Then Of COURSE there are PRIZES!!!!!

For every ten books they fill in, there is a prize. Our typical prizes are ice cream, making cookies with mom, extra screen time, a special mommy and daddy movie night, trip to the dollar store, which culminates in a trip to the bowling alley/arcade.

Some summers my kids have finished this challenge in two weeks, while others it’s taken most of the summer. But the prizes also allow for special memory moments with the kids individually over the summer break.

How do you encourage reading in your house over the summer?

Get 100 Day Book Challenge and Book Bingo PDF for Free here.

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