What is reading level, and what determines it?
As children progress through phonics, they move on to reading leveled books and eventually chapter books of their own choice. Reading teachers will ask children to read aloud either individually or in small groups to practice reading and see how students are progressing. They will look to see how well kids decode phonetically.
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So, what exactly determines reading level?
Many schools use "Lexile measures" to help determine reading level. The Lexile Framework for Reading, a partner of Mrs Wordsmith, has developed a system aligning their tool with the scoring system of standardized reading tests. There is a Lexile range of scores for each grade level. The more fluent your child is in reading aloud phonetically, the faster your child will progress to higher level reading books. Lexile research compiles average reading levels for each school year. Read more here.
If your child struggles to "decode" words (using phonics), they will not be able to progress as quickly to more challenging book levels. Progress with reading is ultimately crucial to your child’s success at school - not just in English, but in many subjects that require reading and writing comprehension and fluency.
Once a child starts to develop decoding fluency, teachers will begin to focus more and more on meaning. They will increasingly ask the child questions about what they read to assess their level of vocabulary knowledge, comprehension and enjoyment of the book. When children cannot read fluently (i.e. decode phonetically), they become stressed and cannot focus on vocabulary, comprehension and enjoyment. Struggles with reading often lead to struggles in other areas of schooling.brings non-human creatures and things to life, and is one of the ways you can let your imagination run wild while writing!
How can I help raise my child's reading level?
You can support your child with his or her reading development by having your child practice phonics independently on our Foolproof Reading app (coming soon!) If you prefer to work with your child, you can also use our fun and easy-to-use Foolproof Phonics and Sight Words Worksheets. We recommend you also read aloud to your child as much as possible. Here is a link to our blog on Reading Aloud with Your Child (coming soon!) and why it helps children develop better reading skills and a love of reading.