Our Family Reading Schedule

Last week on InstaStories, I talked about how we fit reading into our day.

I feel like this list looks like all we do all day long is read, but it’s a pretty organic part of our day and obviously, this isn’t set in stone. If we have other things going on, things might get moved around or skipped, but this is the general structure we use right now.

My biggest goal is always to help my children love books and reading so I try to balance lots of the FUN parts of reading with the work of learning to actual read.

family reading schedule

Our Family Reading Schedule

8:00 – 8:30 a.m. The three older girls usually listen to audiobooks in their rooms before they come out for breakfast and to get the morning started. This isn’t something we require, but ever since our schedule loosened up when school shut down, they’ve been doing this and it’s a nice, quiet way to start the day. Ani and Ella listen together in their room and Star listens in her own room. Tally usually brings in a few books to our room to have us read to her if we’re still in bed or if I’m working in my office, we’ll go into the living room and read them on the couch together. Star often joins us while the big girls are still listening.

10:00 a.m. On Monday through Thursday, Ani has a 20 minute Zoom call with the aide from her first grade class. They practice sight words, nonsense words, and read a few short stories twice through each. (The school offered this during the school year after the schools closed and when the school year ended, we asked the aide if she’d be interested in continuing so that Ani could keep up her skills over the summer). I often try to do reading practice with Star during this time too – we read 1 or 2 books from the 4 Weeks to Read set.

1:30 – 3:30 p.m. During quiet time, the girls all often listen to audiobooks for some or most of the time in their rooms, while they color or clean up a bit or work on a craft or puzzle.

After quiet time. We’ll often read a stack of picture books during this time (usually 1 or 2 girls ask and then everyone ends up piling on the couch). I also try to do a family reading time once or twice a week during this time where we all read our books on our own and have a special snack.

family reading schedule

Before dinner Star generally loves a little time with me to herself so we try to sneak in a chapter or two of the book we’re reading just the two of us (we did this during the school year while the big girls were at school and Tally was napping, but now we have to squeeze it in where we can). Currently, we’re reading Juana and Lucus. We can do 2 chapters in about 10 minutes, so it’s not a lot of time and it’s not EVERY day – probably about every other day.

After dinner (around 6:45 or 7) I do reading practice with Ani while the other girls get in their pjs and brush their teeth and Bart does the dishes. She’ll read 2 picture books aloud to me or we’ll read a chapter or two from a beginner chapter book.

7:45 – 8:15 p.m. I read aloud to the two big girls. Sometimes Star joins us, but recently she prefers to go to bed instead and listen to her audiobook.

8:15 – 9:00 p.m. The girls listen to their audiobooks in bed but they have to be off by about 9. After that, if they still aren’t quite ready to go to bed, they can read physical books as late as they want.


Any questions about this reading schedule (which sounds way more formal than it really is)? I’m happy to try to help or troubleshoot!


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  1. I took your idea of “reading parties” and ran with it since we’re stuck home 24/7 these days. I usually put special snacks in individual bowls and a big stack of library books out on the deck every few days and tell the kids to enjoy. My only goal has been to make reading fun, quantity and quality comes later. Your idea has worked!! I was so ticked when my next door neighbor texted me about her daughter, who has really struggled with reading in school, begging to do a book party because she loves them so much. My boys love the parties, too. Thanks for the great idea!

    P.S. I would love it if you did a post all about sunless tanner. I ordered the product you recommended, but I am at a total loss about application, etc. My pale, Irish skin needs some sunkissed love!

  2. Are you familiar with Story Seeds podcast? https://www.storyseedspodcast.com/
    It’s great! It’s for kids 6-12. Each episode a child is matched with an author. The child has the “story seed”, they meet the author the get it going, then the author writes the beginning of it. Then the listeners/ original child can think and maybe write about what they would have happen next. It’s so great for kids who like audiobooks. I think Jason Reynolds is going to be on the next episode.

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