Setting up a French reading challenge for your child

Getting your child motivated to read in French this time of year can be tough. The school year is coming to an end, the weather is getting warmer (hopefully) and most students would rather be doing something other than reading in the evenings. The thing is, we know that consistent reading will help your child improve. So, how do we keep them motivated? Try a reading challenge! The rewards don’t have to be expensive, but they should be significant for your child. Check out my previous blog post for a list of suggestions. 

Tips tips for making the reading challenge a success: 

  1. Work with your child to create a list of rewards, increasing their investment in the activity. 
  2. Go to the library together and have your child borrow books that are of interest to them. 
  3. Ensure that the books available to your child are a good level for them. A good rule of thumb is to have them read the first couple of pages for you and if there are more than 5 unknown words on a page, it’s likely too hard. If there are no unknown words, the text is likely too easy. Aim for just one or two words per page that pose a challenge. 
  4. Set a goal together! Talk about how many books your child thinks they can realistically in a month, taking into account any extra curricular activities that may be on the schedule. Make a point of emphasizing that reading a book means that you take your time and understand it. It’s not much fun to read a story and have no idea what happened! To ensure your child has actually understood the book, you can ask them to retell you the story.

I’ve created a template that you can fill out with your child to get them started on their reading challenge. It'll be posted on our facebook page :) Happy reading, everyone! 

Mme Michelle is an Instructional Resource Teacher in St. John’s, Newfoundland and is passionate about helping students with diverse needs thrive at school and in the real world. She started French For Life in 2012 with the goal of helping French Immersion students get the support they need to become bilingual, despite academic challenges. Interested in learning more about French For Life virtual tutoring? Contact

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