Summer Reading Coloring Contest + Recommendations for Every Kid


One week into summer and our days are already filled with fun activities, time outdoors, and reconnecting with friends and family. I noticed I need to be really intentional with carving out time for my kids to practice their reading and giving them some down time to let their imaginations run wild.

Our partner, Manzano Day School, also believes in the value of summer reading for strengthening reading skills and tapping into your child’s creativity. Download this coloring page to let your child recreate their favorite book or dream up a story about all their own.

Submit your child’s coloring page to [email protected] by June 18, 2021. We will choose 3 submissions and then allow voting on our Facebook and Instagram pages from June 19-24. The coloring page with the most votes will win a $30 gift certificate to Bookworks and the 2nd and 3rd place winners will win $15 gift certificates.

Summer Reading Recommendations from the ABQ Mom Team

summer reading coloring contestOne of the best things about summer reading is your child can branch out from what they usually read in school. Funny books, mysteries, and special topics are all fair game. I asked our team of writers and community leaders what books their children love and here are their personal recommendations.

Recommendations for Toddlers & Beyond (3+ years old)

Don’t Feed the Worry Bug by Andi Green

Gerald and Piggie by Mo Willems

Hair Love by Matthew A. Cherry

Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Peña

Little Critter books by Mercer Mayer

Pinkalicious Phonics Fun by Victoria Kann

Jonathan James and the What If Monster by Michelle Nelson-Schmidt

First Laugh–Welcome, Baby! by Rose Ann TaheNancy Bo Flood, & Jonathan Nelson


Recommendations for Early Readers (5-7 years old)

Bird on My Head by Mo Willems

Firebird by Misty Copeland

Fry Bread: A Native American Family Story by Kevin Noble

Mal and Chad by Stephen McCranie

Mango, Abuela and Me by Meg Medina and Angela Dominguez

Mercy Watson Series by Kate DiCamillo

The Bad Guys Series by Aaron Blabey

When We Are Kind / Nihá’ádaahwiinít’íigo by Monique Gray Smith

Zoey and Sassafrass Series by Asia Citro

Recommendations for Tweens (8-12 years old)

The Birchbark House by Louise Erdrich

Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney

Dork Diaries by Nikki Maxwell

Hank Zipzer The World’s Greatest Underachiever Series by Henry Winkler and Lin Oliver

Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder

Raina Telgemeier Collection by Raina Telgemeier

The Skirt by Gary Soto

The Stars Beneath Our Feet by David Barclay Moore

The Watsons Go To Birmingham by Christopher Paul Curtis

Recommendations for Teens (13+ years old)

Amulet Series by Kazu Kibuishi

Before We Were Free by Julia Alvarez

Black Enough: Stories of Being Young & Black in America edited by Ibi Zoboi

Emily of New Moon Series by LM Montgomery

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Luck of the Titanic by Stacy Lee

Percy Jackson Heroes of Olympus Series by Rick Riordan

We Are Not From Here by Jenny Torres Sanchez

Under the Mesquite by Guadalupe Garcia McCall