Keeping a Reading Log

One way that you can help your child grow as a reader is by setting up a reading log for him.  By using a reading log, your child can track his own progress as a reader which will then encourage him to keep reading.

What is a Reading Log?

A reading log is a journal of every book your child reads.  A reading log can be as simple as writing down the title and author of the book in a notebook.  Or it can be more elaborate.  A child could give the book a number of stars (between 1 and 5) to rate how good they thought the book was.  Or they could write a short paragraph detailing the main plot of the book.  Younger children could draw a picture to illustrate the main characters in the book.  Older children could also write down what genre the book is found in.  Whatever you decide should work easily for your child, and it should always include the title and author.

Why keep a Reading Log?

There are many benefits to keeping a reading log.

  • One benefit is to show progress.  Writing down every book your child reads allows both you and him to see as they begin to choose harder books or as they begin to read faster and more.  (Adding the date the book is completed will help you see as they begin to read faster.)  Because reading a chapter book can take a while to complete, it is encouraging to see progress that might otherwise be forgotten over time.
  • Another benefit is to encourage your child.  Watching that list of books grow will be exciting to your child.  For most children, it will give them a reason to keep reading.  (You could also give them a small reward for reading a certain number of books.  For example, for every five books they read, they could go out for ice cream or get a small toy.)
  • A third benefit is to help your child learn what types of books they enjoy.  Keeping a record of each book they read, what genre is was, and how many stars they rated the book allows your child to recognize what types of books they like and what kinds they don’t.  Remember though that a child should try more than one book in a genre before they decide they don’t like it!

Reading logs are fun for children, and they are simple for a parent to start.  Just buy a notebook that your child will love, decide what to list about each book, and let them start recording the books that they read.  It will be an encouragement to both you and your child as they start filling the pages with their books.

Elementary Reading Curriculum at Smart Tutor



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