My Summer Plan to Entice My Son to Love Reading


This article is sponsored by Disney Book Group.  All opinions expressed are my own.

Keep reading for your chance to win!

My Summer Plan for Reading - Percy Jackson

When I was a tween/teen, I got lost in books.

I loved to read!

It would start with a trip to the library.  There were some shelves that I read from one end to the other.

And then there were those books that I wish would never end!  The characters had become such a part of my life that it was heartbreaking when the last page was turned.

Books helped me put what was happening in my real life in perspective.  It allowed me to take the bad stuff less seriously because I could find comfort and felt understood in the stories that unfolded.

Even today I read every day.  The books are a little different, but the way a book makes me feel is the same.

And then I had three boys.

And only one of them “likes” to read.

It kinda breaks my heart!

I want for them what I had.  

So, this summer I am trying a little experiment with my 13 year old.  He is the type of kid that loves to participate in things.  He is always doing something.  He is always up for an adventure.

He seems like the perfect fit for a good book, but he has struggled with the mechanics of reading since Kindergarten.  It is work for him to read at grade level.  And while I love the books that he is assigned at school, I can see how it is a chore for him to get through them.  It takes work to successfully digest the required information and then recall it on the next test or essay.

He has never read for fun.

He doesn’t even see it as a possibility.

And that is where my summer scheme begins…

Plan to Entice My Son to Love Reading

This plan was quickly hatched when I was approached by Disney Book Group to participate in the Percy Jackson Summer Reading Program.  I have heard such amazing things about the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series by Rick Riordan

The Lightning Thief - Percy Jackson

It has been on the bestseller list for over 500 weeks!  Here is a little bit about the first book, The Lightning Thief:

Percy Jackson is about to be kicked out of boarding school… again. And that’s the least of his troubles. Lately, mythological monsters and the gods of Mount Olympus seem to be walking straight out of the pages of Percy‘s Greek mythology textbook and into his life. And worse, he’s angered a few of them. Zeus’s master lightning bolt has been stolen, and Percy is the prime suspect. Now Percy and his friends have just ten days to find and return Zeus’s stolen property and bring peace to a warring Mount Olympus. But to succeed on his quest, Percy will have to do more than catch the true thief: he must come to terms with the father who abandoned him; solve the riddle of the Oracle, which warns him of betrayal by a friend; and unravel a treachery more powerful than the gods themselves.

The more I looked into this series, the more I was sure that this could achieve two goals this summer:

  1. Give my son the reading practice he needs daily.
  2. Give my son something that he can enjoy and get lost in.

It only takes one good book to convert a non-reader!  And there are 5 great books in this series!

Reading the Lightning Thief - Percy Jackson

Step 1: Enlist His Help

The first thing I did was to let Rhett in on the plan.  He is a smart boy who would have figured it out quickly, so just laying out what I wanted to do was my best chance for his complete participation.

I started with how reading was such a big part of my life at his age and I wanted that for him.  I ended with an offer for this to be part of his “summer job”.

Yes, I negotiated a per book rate.

{Don’t judge me}

My thought was to align his goals with mine.  He will be spending the summer asking for jobs to make money.  I will be begging him to read.  This way we kill two birds with one stone. 

It will eliminate my nagging and keep him on track willingly.

Step 2:  Set Up a Reading Schedule

Because it is my goal to have him read the entire series this summer, this can only be successful if we start with a good daily reading plan.

Reading aloud has always been a favorite activity in my house.  I have found it to be one of the easiest ways to attract my boys (even teen boys who are normally too busy for their mom) to sit and hang out with me.  Knowing this will help Rhett dive into the story faster, I want to incorporate some together reading time into our summer schedule.

Oh, and then I get to read the books too!

For us, it is easiest to start and end the day this way.  We are setting aside some time both in the morning and evening to read.  

I personally love reading in the morning because it gets my day off to a thoughtful start.  And who doesn’t love a good bedtime story?

Step 3:  House Rules Surrounding Reading

Because we are taking on this program as part of Rhett’s summer job, we are placing house rules around the reading schedule:

  1. No screen time before morning reading is completed.
  2. Phone stays at rest until after morning reading.
  3. Books travel with him.

We will be traveling several times this summer and reading in new locations is part of the fun!

Reading on the back porch with Panda - Percy Jackson

Step 4:  Find a Good Reading Spot

This may seem unnecessary, but I think it is essential to the success of this plot…I mean plan.  We live in a small house and Rhett shares a room with one of his older brothers.  If he was to simply read while sitting on his bed, it would be filled with interruptions and distractions.

We need to find a place where he can concentrate and enjoy the story.

We have talked about it and have several places we are going to try and see which one works best:

  • Couch in the living room – because I work a lot in the living room at a small desk behind the couch, it is usually pretty quiet!
  • Back porch – this is my favorite place in the morning and evening when it isn’t experiencing intense Texas heat.
  • Front porch – this covered area is often breezy.
  • Lakeside benches – there is a really cool public area with picnic tables and benches a 5 minute walk from our house that overlooks the lake.
  • Dog park – this is Panda’s favorite location and there is plenty of shade and seats for humans.

Percy Jackson and the Olympians book set

We Are Giving Away A Set!

So, what do you think of my plan?  Do you have a reluctant reader you think would benefit from joining Rhett on the Percy Jackson Summer Reading Challenge?  Here’s your chance to win the books for yourself!

Leave a comment below answering the question: 


This will enter you to win the Percy Jackson & the Olympians 5 book set!*

*Open to U.S. addresses only. Prizing provided by Disney Book Group. Winner will be chosen randomly at noon on June 12, 2019 and notified via email (to the email address provided in the comment).  If no response is given within 48 hours another winner will be chosen.

Good luck!  


  1. This is awesome! I love to read on the back porch in the summer.

  2. Jennifer Enriquez says:

    My kids love to sit on the bean bag to read!

  3. Elise Moore says:

    This sounds like a perfect idea for my reluctant reader heading into 5th grade!

  4. We have 2 “fancy “chairs at the top of our stairs and a hidden nook under the stairs that my kids like to read in.

  5. My son likes to read in bed.

  6. He can’t read by himself yet, but we read to him. He likes to sit on the couch with us while we read.

  7. My grandson reads in my lap every morning he’s with me…which is usually at least 3 days a week. He will grab his little books and say, “read?!?!” (He’s not quite 2 yet ??)

  8. Katina Stubblefield says:

    My daughter likes to read multiple places. But her favorite places are her room and the dining room table

  9. My nine year old devours books, my 5 year old and one year old loves to sit on the couch and be read to.

  10. My 9 year old daughter loves to read in my bed with me or in the “den”. We used to have a princess castle tent but she’s grown it of late.

  11. My daughter likes to read either on the front porch or in her bedroom.

  12. My daughter and I love to read in bed together… I have to chart at night and so she grabs her book and comes and snuggles on in beside me… she just finished Harry Potter series and would love this series!

  13. Sibelly Gomez says:

    My daughter likes to read in her room, she opens the curtains and she has perfect lighting, she also likes to read before going to sleep, she tells me that she dreams of everything she reads!

  14. My son loves to read on the couch or in his bed.

  15. Ashley Jensen says:

    I have a very reluctant reader because he struggles so much to read. I would love to have these to read aloud. My Daughter loves to read in her bed

  16. Sara Pobanz says:

    My son loves to read snuggled up my bed with me.

  17. Ami Pajaro says:

    The little reading my son likes to do is during the day on the couch and at bedtime on his bed with lights on. I wish him could like reading more. Thank you for sharing.

  18. Elliana Lone says:

    I love to read in my cozy chair that looks out my window or somewhere I can admire the beauty of the outdoors. And always with a coffee/tea/hot chocolate in hand. 🙂

  19. My daughter loves to read on a hammock in our yard.

  20. My daughter loves to read in her room .

  21. My daughter reads anyware bu her favorite spot has to be in her room.

  22. His good old fashioned bean bag chair in his room!! 🙂

  23. I think this is an excellent idea! My kiddo struggles with reading, but has made progress this scum year. I don’t want her to lose that!!

  24. I think this is an excellent idea! My kiddo struggles with reading, but has made progress this school year. I don’t want her to lose that!!

  25. My older granddaughter loves to read and thus reads everywhere; on the school bus, in her bed, at a picnic bench.
    My younger granddaughter sounds like your son. Money is always a good motivator, and I intend to try this with her.
    Thanks for the idea.

  26. My Daughters and I all love to read in bed!

  27. My daughter loves to read in the hammock.

  28. I have two girls. The oldest likes reading but the youngest is more reluctant. Howver, I got her some graphic novels and pokemon comic books (she loves pokemon!). That helped her get into reading and she enjoys it now. We are almost done with James and the Giant Peach, which she reads aloud to me.

  29. We like to read snuggling in a bed together. I have an amazing reader that loves it and then my 8 year old hates reading. Which makes me sad, I love to read!

  30. My son loves to read any and everywhere but every night we read together in his bed. Right now we’re on book 2 of Harry Potter and he loves it!

  31. Kelly Stowe says:

    I like to read by our apartment pool. My 11 year old loves to read in his bed before everyone else wakes up. And the one year old throws books at us all day long yelling book and we read what we can before he snatches it back.

  32. My son loves to read in his room on his bed. Although, we probably need a new spot since he sometimes falls asleep reading! HA.

  33. Kristen Yard says:

    My daughter and I both love to read! Lately our thing is reading poetry before bed, and then discussing what the poem means, etc. We love it!

  34. I have dibs on the corner of my couch for reading. 🙂

  35. My kiddo loves to read in bed! We snuggle under the covers and read together!

  36. Our children love to read on the couch and outside ! 🙂

  37. My daughter’s favorite spots to read are under her loft bed while holding her guinea pigs and in her hammock in the back yard. =)

  38. My daughters favorite place to read is in her treehouse play set area. She is 3. We sit up there and read for hours and bring a picnic.

  39. Marla Hall says:

    My son likes to read on the couch. I am an avid reader and my son while a great reader doesn’t share my passion for reading. It makes me sad. 🙁

  40. When my son was younger he was also a reluctant reader unlike his sister who love to read! The house was too boring to read in so I would take him to the park to read. I related everything we were seeing to a book! For example, after we fed the squirrels we would read a book where the main character was a squirrel. And I would do the same things after feeding the birds, planting flowers, and visiting the zoo!

    1. Hi Carleen!
      You won the giveaway! I am contacting you via this email address to get your mailing address! CONGRATS!

  41. Upuia Afafala says:

    Favorite reading spot is in my room, on my bed. My kids say it’s the quietest place in the house lol. I appreciate your post. Very helpful. Thank you

  42. in his bed with just a table lamp!

  43. Jade Wilkinson says:

    My son reads about anywhere but he reads most in his bed. At bedtime, until the wee hours of the morning haha, i have to tell him when to stop! He hasn’t read Percy Jackson yet though, and maybe I can get my anti-reader to read it too!

  44. I hope you don’t mind if I steal this plan to use with my 12 year old son.

    On the rare occasion I can get him to read (books with tips for playing Minecraft) he likes to sit under his loft bed on giant pillows.

  45. My favorite reading spot is lounging on the beach. I am currently working on creating a reading nook in my house and I can’t wait until it’s finished. It’ll probably become my new favorite reading spot and get me through the colder months when I can’t be on the beach!

  46. We love to read anywhere, but especially on our homemade “beanbag” chairs. They are just the shells stuffed with the girls dress-up and stuffed animals. Useful and comfy! Extra good for cuddling while reading. 🙂

  47. My son loves to read anywhere….he likes it when I read too…with him outside…I enjoy being around my son…doing things he likes!

  48. Jenifer Ferrara says:

    My daughter will read anywhere if she’s in the mood, but her favorite place it’s the back porch.

  49. I love sitting outside and reading under a tree when the weather is nice! When the weather isn’t great, I like relaxing in my “reading corner” that has beanbag chairs and lots of blankets in my home office!

  50. Amy Spengler says:

    My Devin loves to read on our porch. We read together often out there. We both just started this series and love it!!

  51. Sarah Weidner says:

    My child’s favorite reading place is laying on her shag rug that is in her room.

  52. Alissa Hoo says:

    Awesome plan! I’d love to get my oldest daughter interested in this series. Right now her favorite spot to read is her bed but we have a great front porch that I think would be nice for readings as well. This will be our first summer in our new house so I can’t wait to see how it goes!

  53. Maria Elena says:

    My son loves to read on his bed or in the patio.

  54. Netsie Cunningham says:

    My kids will read (or “read,” as the case may be) anywhere, but our laps is definitely a top spot! We have a new reader and toddlers, we’re reading chapter books together and my husband and I will read aloud together, too, in the evenings!

  55. Jeanette Coutu says:

    My son hates to read… also struggles to stay at grade level. When he does read we usually read together in his room, sometimes snuggled in his bed or in bean bag chairs…. always looking for a series he will get lost in and want to pick up in his own….I loved reading as a kid but didn’t have today’s distractions back then…. reading was entertainment

  56. My daughter gets cozy under her bed to read with a flashlight.

  57. Miranda Hajny says:

    We snuggle up in bed or the couch

  58. Christine says:

    I have a child who struggles to read too. We do the reading aloud before bed too and I was just thinking of a “bribe” for summer reading. My son had started to read lightening thief last year and his school told him it was to advanced for him. However he was able to read aloud to me with out difficulty but needless to say they cut his spirit down and never finished the book. I would love to be able to win this set of books and to see him get into a book(s) again.

  59. My son likes to read on his bed, on our back patio, and sometimes in the dining room. Hes currently an only child so he has plenty of quiet areas to read. But we are expecting his baby brother June 16th, and we are already planning on making a “reading nook” in his playroom to give him a more quiet “get away” area to read.

  60. Diane Dixon says:

    My son likes to just stretch out on the floor sometimes with a cushion or pillow under his head. Sometimes he asks questions by just looking at the pictures. Surprisingly if he is really in the reading mood he will read anywhere, with or without noise.

  61. My son hates to read and he is 12. Recently he is been reading James Patterson kids book. I recommend him percy Jacson but didnot show any interest. He didnot even turn a page. He has no interest in reading. I just need help. I want him to love reading. He reads in granmas room. Its cozy.

  62. Dorothy Coop says:

    Their favorite spots are definitely in their bunk bed (10 and 7 year old) because they also add pillows and blankets and stuffies to make a very cozy fort!

  63. In the car! And it’s a bonus because it keeps them from fighting!?

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