Getting children to read for pleasure can be difficult. Reading seems such a passive activity, and they can quickly become restless and bored. The idea behind Reading Bingo is that they put these bingo cards in their home reading books, and when they've read a particular genre they get an adult/teacher to sign it off for them. If they get 4 in a row, they get a special prize! If you like, you can offer an additional reward to students completing an entire card.

The thinking behind reading bingo is to get children to widen their horizons by reading types of books that they wouldn't normally read. Making this into a game, like reading bingo, brings out their competitive spirit and also gets them to ask questions about what all the different genres are if they're not sure. Alhough they are really competing against themselves, you could set up a leader board too to encourage the whole class.

Once you've introduced the concept of Reading Bingo to the class, explain what the different genres are and where they can be found in the school library. Model how to use the cards and then once a week remind them how to use their cards.

Samples of the cards for reading bingo are included here as pdf format and MS Word format (which is editable). I've included the following genres:

  • Adventure
  • Mystery
  • Fantasy
  • Horror
  • Myths and Legends
  • Science Fiction
  • Traditional Tales
  • Graphic novel
  • Biography
  • Reference book
  • Poetry
  • Newspaper
  • Peer recommended
  • Teacher recommended
  • Magazine or Comic
  • Book from a series

but, as they are editable, you can include what you like on yours.

Rewards will reflect the age and interests of your students. KS1 children may be quite content with collecting stickers or stars, while older children may be more interested in winning a free pizza or extra golden time.


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