Christmas Reading Log (Free Printable Reading Chart)

Do you want to get your child off screens and into a good book? Use the Christmas Reading Log to encourage more reading.

Day 4 of 12 Days of Free Christmas Printable Activities. This is my thank you for my email subscribers. Your support matters!


School has been pretty chaotic over the last few years.  So we need to get our children off of screens and into books more than ever!

But what can exhausted parents do? Nagging your child doesn’t work.

Turn the responsibility over to your child. Give them a structure to monitor how much they are reading.

Grab the Christmas Reading Log and your child will enjoy reading more!

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Free Christmas Reading Log

Use this free Christmas reading chart printable to encourage your children to read more this Christmas season.

Like all the printables for the 12 Days of Free Christmas Printable Activities, this is a free gift to my email subscribers. SImply enter your information in the boxes below and it will be sent straight to your inbox.

Find the email from me, and then click on the big button inside. The printable will pop open in your browser.

If you have any trouble printing this free Christmas Reading Log, save it to your desktop and open in Adobe Reader.

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Why Use a Christmas Reading Log?

You may be wondering why you should even use a Christmas reading chart.

Good readers read frequently. It’s a fact – good readers read more frequently than poor readers.

Why is this? Because it’s easier for them!

They have reached the point in reading where it’s become effortless. So that makes it a lot of fun!

But just like any other skill, people need a lot of time to practice to get to the point where it is effortless.. So in the beginning, it’s important to make practice time a priority.

Plus the Christmas Reading Chart monitors how much your child is reading. And research has shown that when we monitor or track something, more progress is made.

christmas reading chart printable with 20 blank trees on a green clipboard

How to Use a Christmas Reading Log

Your children will color in one of 20 Christmas trees when they finish their reading. There are two versions of this reading log when you download the printable:

  • one is to color in a tree after each book.
  • the other is to color a tree for every 15 minutes of reading.

Color in a Tree for Each Book

This reading log is great for preschoolers and kindergarten-age children. Here’s how to use it:

  • Print the printable.
  • Place it on a clipboard.
  • Gather a basket of favorite books.
  • Read one book with your child.
  • Show your child how to color in one tree.
  • Set up a routine for reading every day.

Color in a Tree for Every 15 Minutes of Reading

This reading log is great for elementary-age children. Here’s how to use it:

  • Print the printable.
  • Put it on a clipboard near your child’s favorite reading spot.
  • Get a timer to show your child the amount of time. We love the Time Timer.
  • Read with your child or alongside your child for 15 minutes.
  • Show your child how to color in one tree.
  • Make sure you have a daily routine for reading.

Make Reading Automatic

For either printable, you need to make reading part of your daily routine.

If you have to constantly remind your child, it turns into nagging.  However, if you can create a routine where it just happens, your child develops independence.

You can grab a free winter break routine printable.

But my child doesn’t like reading!

You’re thinking about using a reading chart at Christmas. But your child doesn’t like to read.

These are two common reasons your child might be struggling:

Lack of Phonological Awareness

Research demonstrates the number 1 reason children are struggling to read is a weakness in phonological awareness.

English is a code of symbols – the alphabet – that stand for speech sounds. When children have difficulty understanding and manipulating those sounds, they will struggle to break the code.

The great news is there are phonological awareness printables that can support you as you teach your child to read at home.

Books are Too Hard

Even if your child has strong phonological awareness, they need to read books that they can decode, or sound out.

So help your child choose books that are decodable. This means you need make sure your child can actually sound out most of the words on a page.

If on one page your child misses more than 1-2 words, try something a little easier or read that book together!

Should I Reward Reading?

You can set a reward for each time your child colors in a tree or for when they finish the whole chart. Really, I don’t think a reward is necessary, though.

Plus, using rewards can actually kill motivation over time. You want your child to read because they love it – not for a reward.

If you choose the right books and make reading time pleasant and low pressure, most children will be excited to do it.

Then you need to choose great books. Order them online or check your local library.

Strategies for When Children Resist Reading

If you think your child is going to complain about reading, it’s important to have a plan.

Here are my suggestions:

  • Use “first, then.” First, you do your reading, then you have screen time (or we go to the playground or we decorate cookies, etc).
  • Read together. If you read aloud, it counts!
  • Model reading. Use this as a break for yourself and read while your child reads.

There are many reasons why reading during the Christmas season is important. But this year more than ever, all our children need the focused time to read.

Christmas Reading Log

Nothing kills motivation to read like having to record title, author, and pages read. I’ve been there. I’ve assigned it. It’s not really helpful if our goal is to get children to read more,

However, coloring is easy and fun. It still provides a visual of accountability without turning it into a chore! So grab this free printable below, and get reading!


What are your child’s favorite books to read this holiday season? Share below!


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