children's books · Every day life · school

2016 Reading challenge for kids

A new year, and a whole bunch of new books to read.  My son is an avid reader.  I just can’t keep up with him.  My 8 year old isn’t quite there yet.  Neither is my ten year old nephew.  To help them along, I have created a challenge for them- twelve books in twelve months.  Not too crazy.  I am sure they will read more than that.  So here it is…


  1. A national book award winner
  2. A book based on a fairytale
  3. A book set in your home state
  4. A book set in Europe
  5. A book that is also a movie
  6. A book recommended by a friend
  7. A book published in 2016
  8. A book that takes place in the summer
  9. A mystery
  10.  A biography
  11. A book that takes place on an island
  12. A book with a green cover

Of course, I will be giving a reward if the challenge is completed.  Who will join us?


Here is a printable copy of the Book challenge .

children's books

Elephant and Piggie

Do you have a reluctant reader?  My son loves to read…when there is absolutely nothing else to do!  He often reads in bed because it means he can delay lights out, but he will not usually pick up a book during the day.  There is far too much playing to be done!

These Elephant and Piggie books by Mo Willems are perfect!  When my son was in first grade he devoured these books.  There are very few words on a page, and they are funny.  I mean really funny.  They are also great for kids to read over and over again to improve fluency.  Yes, kids should read out loud and it should sound as it does when they are speaking.  These books give a child so many chances to use expression when reading.  Even thought they are too easy for my son now, we keep buying them as they come out with new ones.  They are too funny not to.  And when you get through all of these, try the pigeon books.  They are just as awesome.  And whatever you do….don’t let the pigeon stay up late!

We Are In a Book!

There Is a Bird on Your Head!: An Elephant and Piggie Book

Visit Moe Willems at  I think I love him, because he really got my son reading.

children's books

Go, Dog. Go!

I am a teacher.  I spend all day helping children with learning disabilities.  You think I would have more patience when doing homework with my own kids.

Go, Dog. Go! (Beginner Books(R))

Tonight, at story time, James chose Go, Dog. Go!  as one of his stories.  I started to read it, but he shushed me up, insisting on reading it himself.  This was a first, so I had to let him.  OMG!  It was tedious!  It took James nearly half an hour.  I kept trying to read the odd page here and there, but he was not having it.  I was so proud of him for sticking with it, but also ready for a stiff drink by the last page.

children's books

Favorite Halloween Books – By James

1.  The Falling Leaves and the Scarecrow by Steve Metzger

This book has crows in it.  The scarecrow is not very good at his job, and he cannot scare the crows.  The leaves come up with a good idea to help him.

The Falling Leaves and the Scarecrow

2.  Shake dem Halloween Bones by W. Nikola-Lisa

I like the pumpkin guy who sings the song.  Lots of fairy tale characters come to the party and join in the dance. Scoo-bee-doo-bee-doo-wah!

 Shake Dem Halloween Bones

 3. Goodnight Goon A Petrifying Parody by Michael Rex

A parody of Goodnight Moon.  In the cold gray tomb/ There was a  pre=”a “>graveatone/ and a black lagoon/ AAT a picture of-/Martians taking over the moon




Goodnight Goon: A Petrifying Parody


4.  Ten Timid Ghosts by Jennifer O’Connell

I like to look for the clever ghost in each page.  She knows the witch is behind all the strange things going on in the house!

Ten Timid Ghosts (Read With Me Paperbacks)



5. Big Pumpkin by Erica Silverman

It reminds me of the Enormous Turnip

Big Pumpkin