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National Summer 2021 Reading Challenge

Looking for a way to keep your students reading through the summer? Class won't be in session while school is out, but you still can beat the summer and COVID slide. We’ve partnered with Thorndike Press and Mark Cuban to bring you our first National K12 Summer 2021 Reading Challenge, “Level Up.”


This summer we’re encouraging students to just read and to keep reading. We’re also highlighting large print books, which studies show improve reading speed, boost reading comprehension, and work especially well with readers who are below their grade level.


During the summer, many students lose up to two months of learning. Two thirds of the income-based achievement gap are attributed to summer learning loss by the start of high school. This challenge has now been compounded by COVID learning loss as our schools are disrupted by the pandemic. It’s time to Level Up.


Mark Cuban is generously supplying cash prizes & Thorndike Press will donate prize packs that allow libraries to build their large print collections.

Grand Prize

$5,000 and $1,000 of large print books and a virtual author live chat with your school

Second Place

$2,500 and $500 of large print books

4 Runner Ups

$2,500 and $250 of large print books


Thorndike Press will highlight some of their award-winning authors, who have published works in large print. The school or district that earns the Grand Prize will receive a live virtual visit from of these authors.

How it works

  • Get signed up!

    Fill out the form to register your school or district to participate in the challenge.

  • Get set up! *

    A member of our team will contact you with subscription options for Beanstack.

    * Existing Beanstack and Thorndike Press school customers can participate at no additional charge.

  • Get reading!

    Use our customizable resources to get students and parents involved. Every minute read gets you closer to the grand prize.

Get a Demo


Download challenge badges, flyers, and other resources to promote this challenge.

  • Challenge Graphics

    Download all the badges and banners used in this challenge.

  • Social Templates

    Use these social media resources to encourage readers to participate.

  • Promotional Materials

    Send out these instructions to get readers started.

Have Questions?

Interested in joining the challenge, but have questions? We're here to help.

Email Us