Idaho Teen Reading Challenge

8 Books. 7 Months. 1 State.

Over 350 Idaho teens and tweens at 60 different libraries completed the 2021-22 Idaho Teen Reading Challenge – nice work! Check out the map below for locations of the libraries that had a teen finish the challenge.

The Idaho Teen Reading Challenge is a chance for school and public libraries to challenge teens to read books outside of their comfort zone. Here’s how it works:

  1. During the months of October – April, teens are challenged to read 8 books from the following  10 categories:
    • Award Nominee: a book nominated for an award
    • Book to Movie: a book that has been made into a movie
    • Book with a Red Cover: book cover is red (or mostly red)
    • Free Choice: read whatever you want!
    • From a Library Display: a book from a physical or digital display at the library
    • IBOB Title: from this year’s Idaho Battle of the Books selections
    • Not a Novel: nonfiction, poetry, book of short stories, etc.
    • Published in the Last Five Years: published in 2017 or later
    • Recommended by a Mentor: read a book recommended by a librarian, teacher, parent, or other mentor
    • Saw it on BookTok: read a book you saw on TikTok
  2. Register your library to participate in the reading challenge. When you register, you will have the chance to request tracking forms, bookmarks, and reading journals to hand out to teens. Registration for this year’s TRC is closed.
  3. We will mail you a set of tracking forms, bookmarks, and journals. You can decide how much interaction you have with teens who take the challenge – you can set up a spreadsheet or other method to track their progress, or just check in occasionally. When they have completed the entire challenge, they need to turn in their tracking sheet to you. You do not have to keep the tracking sheets. Do you need more materials? Requests more here.
  4. Keep track of how many teens complete the challenge. In May, you will be asked to submit a short evaluation with the total number of teens who finished the challenge at your library. You will also be able to send feedback about the program and suggestions for next year’s categories.

That’s it! Hopefully this will be a fun way to engage with teens and encourage them to discover books they love.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: Why are there 10 categories if you only need to read 8 books? 
A: Giving teens a choice is important and having extra categories builds a little bit of flexibility into the program. The hope is that teens are challenged to read something new and not turned off by having to read in a category that doesn’t work for them.

Q: I need more tracking sheets / bookmarks / journals – can you mail me some?
A: Yes – we have left over printed materials and will send them to any library that requests them until we run out. Just fill out this form to get more tracking sheets and bookmarks.

Q: Will the ICfL provide an incentive for teens who complete the program? 
A: Not this year – we were able to provide a $300 in gift cards for a drawing during the first year of the challenge, but we are not able to so this year.

Q: Can my library provide additional incentives?
A: Yes! Feel free to use the framework of the challenge and modify this program in ways that work for your teens.

Q: What types of books qualify for the reading challenge?
A: ALL types of books qualify – audio books, eBooks, graphic novels, instructional manuals, etc.

Q: Who can participate in the challenge?
A: All Idaho teens, ages 12 – 19, can participate.

Q: What about sixth-graders who are 11 but will turn 12 this year?
A: They can definitely participate in the challenge too!

Q: Can my library use our own tracking system, like Beanstack, instead of the tracking sheets?
A: Yes! You can just send your stats to Jennifer in May to get counted.

Q: Can I print off my own stuff? 
A: Yes! Here are PDF’s of the bookmarks, tracking sheets, and journals

Q: Can I edit these in Canva and add my library’s logo?
A: Sure! Here are Canva links to the bookmarks, tracking sheets, and journal (the file sizes are REALLY big, so here is the link to part 1 and here is part 2)

Q: Is there a way to get a copy of the Idaho Teen Reading Challenge logo?
A: Yup! Here you go!

On September 13, 2022, the ICfL hosted a virtual Info Session on the Idaho Teen Reading Challenge. You can view it here:

Questions about the challenge? Contact Jennifer:

Jennifer Redford

Youth Services Consultant
Email / 208-639-4147
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