Reading Games

Grade Levels: K - 8


Students will practice their reading skills.


  • Posterboard (or sturdy paper)
  • Paint or crayons
  • Scissors
  • Hole puncher
  • Spool of ribbon


  1. In this activity, students go for the gold (or whatever other color they choose) by entering books they have read in a fun series of Olympic-style reading events.

  2. Together, brainstorm a list of book games and competitions. Keep contests of skill to a minimum, and make them fun. For most events, the books themselves should be the contenders. Here are some examples of records your readers can hope to hold:

    • Most number of pages read in seven minutes
    • Longest list of characters in a single story
    • Fastest oral reading that the class can still understand
    • Longest word on a page
    • Longest sentence on a page
    • Thickest book (not necessarily the one with the most pages)
    • Book with the most pictures
    • Book with the longest title (number of words)
    • Oldest book (earliest copyright)

  3. The class decides when to hold the events (plan an hour or two over several consecutive days) and sets some ground rules. For example: Books have to have been read in the last six weeks to qualify (or the next six weeks if you're planning ahead); readers can enter the same book in no more than two events (this encourages more reading); and two readers who enter the same book can tie for a medal.

  4. The children can fashion their own medallions out of posterboard and color or paint them any three colors that correspond to the gold, silver, and bronze medals awarded to the top three contenders in the real Olympic Games. Help punch holes and string them on lengths of ribbon.

Brought to you by Reading Is Fundamental®

Source: The RIF Guide to Encouraging Young Readers, edited by Ruth Graves, New York: Doubleday, 1987.

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