6 Summer Reading Challenges to Hook Kids on Books over the Break

Motivate your family to hit the books this summer with some friendly competition, and take on one of these reading challenges for kids. By Frannie Ucciferri
6 Summer Reading Challenges to Hook Kids on Books over the Break

Getting kids to read during summer vacation can be a huge challenge, especially with so many games, apps, and other fun media distractions available to them when school's out. But there's a ton of value to hitting the books, even when it's not required by a teacher. Reading over the summer is the most effective tool against "summer slide," and research shows that students who read when school's out enter the next grade better prepared than students who don't.

But convincing kids and teens to crack open a book when they could be swimming, streaming video, or socializing is no easy task. That's why we've come up with some summer reading "challenges" that the whole family can get behind. Some friendly competition might be exactly what you need to motivate even the most reluctant readers. These aren't your standard "read as many books as you can" challenges either (although we do have suggestions to keep your biggest bookworm occupied). These lists and guides have something for kids of all ages, interests, and reading levels, so that they can find the perfect book that will inspire them to keep reading all summer long.

Pick the challenge that best suits your family!


Challenge 1: Read the book(s) before you see the movie.

Get film fans excited with these books -- and then see them on the big screen.

Challenge 2: Find a book your reluctant reader will love.

For many people, a love of reading is just a matter of finding the right book.

Challenge 3: Have a tech-free vacation.

Stay occupied (and off devices) on road trips, on the beach, at summer camp, and more.

Challenge 4: How fast can you finish the series?

For speedy readers or anyone who wants to stay with their favorite characters a little longer.

Challenge 5: Get ahead for the next school year.

Fight off summer learning loss and enjoy some great books at the same time.

Challenge 6: How many essential books have you read?

Still need something to read? We have you covered with hundreds of amazing books for kids.

About Frannie Ucciferri

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As associate managing editor, Frannie Ucciferri makes sure each of Common Sense Media's more than 30,000 reviews and 700 curated lists is as complete and comprehensive as possible. Frannie is a graduate of UC Berkeley,... Read more

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Comments (5)

Parent written by Actively R.

Our family does a lot of "theme reading" around whatever our current activities are. Since it's summer, we're at the beach a lot, so I wrote a blog post about beach reads. http://actively-reading.squarespace.com/blog/2017/7/13/usmxc45xm49p0e8y0...
Parent written by lobi3553

My son is a reluctant reader but loves to listen to audiobooks in the car. Does it count as 'reading" or it is considered 'cheating'?
Kid, 10 years old

I'm just a kid, but I think if he really understands the story and can visualize it, I'm pretty sure it counts as reading.