My son hates to read. Nope, no dyslexia or ADHD. He’s actually several years ahead in all of his reading skills. My niece, who is the same age, always has her nose in a book. I did too, as a kid.

I want my son to enjoy reading. I have purchased every sports book and magazine you can imagine to encourage him. Getting him to read is a challenge, no pun intended.

book challenge or reading challenge

Still, whenever I say, “Hey, it’s time for us to do our reading,” I get opposition and pushback. And who likes confrontation every day? NO ONE. So, I have decided I am going to stick with this until we have completed our 30 books.

Save The Post Kids Activities Form

Save this for later?

We can instantly send this to your inbox. Or, send to a friend.

I can’t even imagine what it’s like to encourage a child to do something that they struggle with. It would be like telling me I have to shoot 3-pointers for 20 minutes a day.

But, if you let me choose the ball, the net and every other aspect of it, I might be interested. And successful. This can be adapted to any reading level or ability.

Reading Challenge

Adults don’t like to do things we aren’t successful at either. But, as parents, it is up to each of us to also teach perseverance and grit. You don’t get better at something unless you practice.

Very few of us are experts at something the first time we try it.

If you have a child in elementary school, chances are that you’ve heard of the 30 book challenge.

I’m not suggesting that every kid with dyslexia just isn’t trying hard enough. I know they need specific interventions. But I also know that success begets success, so if you’re going to do this reading challenge with a struggling reader, then you will have to guide them to books that they can read successfully. That might mean audiobooks.

What is the 30 Book Challenge?

It’s actually an initiative that schools do all across the nation.

The 30 Book Challenge is based on Donalyn Miller’s book, “The Book Whisperer.” Ms. Miller claims that she has yet to meet a child who could not be taught to enjoy reading. So, are you up for the challenge?

I’m a little skeptical, because over the years I have met far too many dyslexic kids who struggled with reading. And, they were gaslighted, as were their parents, and repeatedly told, “He’s doing fine!”

But, she is the author or co-author of several books about creating engaging and inclusive reading communities for all children. So, I’m going to assume that if we follow her guidelines for this book challenge, that even a struggling reader will experience some success.

In her first book, The Book Whisperer, Donalyn reflects on her journey to become a reading teacher and describes how she inspires and motivates her middle school students to read 40 or more books a year.

These are her tenets.

The Book Whisperer Concepts

  • Affirm the reader in every student
  • Allow students to choose their own books
  • Carve out extra reading time
  • Model authentic reading behaviors
  • Discard timeworn reading assignments such as book reports and comprehension worksheets
  • Develop a classroom (or home!) library filled with high-interest books

Sounds simple enough, right? So, who’s in it with me? I don’t know that we’ll get to 30 books, but it’s a starting point.

What age does the 30 Book Challenge begin?

Some schools that do this are very specific about ages and rules. But hey, I’m a parent who just wants her kid to enjoy reading.

30 book challenge ideas

Reading Tracker

There isn’t much to add once you read her ideas from her book. The free printable reading tracker I’m including can be adapted for any age group.

Enjoying Reading with a Learning Disability

You know what? Start out with audiobooks if you must! Have your child follow along with the text version.

If your child’s needs are not being met at school, revisit your IEP and request further evaluations or interventions.

Raise a Reader!

  1. What is AR Reading? And what do the Color Levels mean?
  2. Tips for Teaching Inflectional Endings or Inflected Endings + Free Worksheet PDF!
  3. Free Phonics Worksheets including CVC, Dipthongs, Vowels, Blends and More.
  4. 10 Research-Based Vocabulary Interventions for an IEP or RTI/MTSS
  5. How to Write a Meaningful IEP for Dyslexia (includes IEP Goals for Dyslexia)
  6. Phonological Awareness vs Phonemic Awareness: What’s the Difference and What’s the Same?
  7. 26 Free Alphabet Worksheets for Preschool and Kindergarten
  8. 20 Common Reading Intervention Programs for Schools (+how to get one on your IEP)
  9. Reading Comprehension Strategies: How to Improve Reading Comprehension (and then Reading Speed and Fluency)
  10. 30 Book Reading Challenge for Kids: Free Printable Reading Tracker
  11. What Is Decoding in Reading? A Simple Explanation
  12. Is Lindamood Bell Worth the Money?
  13. 13 Free Summer Reading Programs For Kids
  14. Dolch Sight Words: Free PDF Lists and Worksheets
  15. What are Temporal Words? (includes anchor chart)
  16. Is Your 3rd Grader Struggling? It’s Probably the Matthew Effect in Reading.
  17. Fry’s First 100 Words | PDF | Printable
  18. What is a Frayer Model? | Example | Blank Template
  19. Elkonin Boxes for Dyslexia | Phonemic Awareness | Examples | PDF

Free IEP Binder
Featured Image