Encourage students to read 40 books in a year

40 Books in a year sounds like a lot, right? It is. However, every year I am encouraging students to read 40 books for the 40 Book Challenge.

I originally read The Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller in January of 2018.

Donalyn wrote about the 40 Book Challenge and I was all over it. Our team already implemented the 40 Book Challenge – however, I didn’t understand the benefits.

I started by purchasing a library case from TpT- a digital one of course. The students used that to log all of the books that they read. I held the kids accountable with their books but I realized I needed more.

This year for the 40 Book Challenge, I decided to make it part of our proud wall. Some people feel that if you display their numbers it is a negative reflection. However, change it up by adding YOUR name to the list. Students can see you reading books and growing your recorded amount and that will encourage them to read more.

Personally, I will lag behind and then record my book consumption during the reading block. Even if the kids act like they don’t see me- I place a sticker. As much as I say its not a competition- the kids make it one. They want to always read more books than me.

How do I differentiate or include other books?

Originally – I only counted chapter books. This year, I changed it. I have students that read on level N and find reading a chapter book incredibly hard or intimidating. To earn a sticker for their chart they need to do the following:

  • Completely Read 1 chapter book, or
  • Read 10 picture books, or
  • Read 5 Graphic Novels

All they have to do is complete one of the bullets above and they get a sticker on their chart.

Download the 40 Book Challenge for your Bulletin board Here!

Want some other awesome ideas for your classroom? Check out my blog post from my 2019 Classroom Reveal.

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