Dear Parent / Carer,
Is your child in Year 7, 8 or 9? If so, then ‘Accelerated Reader’ should be something he or she knows all about.
Reading is such a powerful thing. As JK Rowling once said, “something very magical can happen when you read a good book” and a child who reads well, and loves to read, is far more likely to excel in school and achieve personal growth. In order to ensure that all our students read well and understand what they are reading, we offer the exciting reading program called ‘Accelerated Reader.
What exactly is ‘Accelerated Reader’?
It is a computer program that helps teachers manage and monitor children’s independent reading practice. Your child picks a book at his/her own level and reads it at his/her own pace. When finished, your child takes a short quiz on the computer; passing the quiz is an indication that your child has understood what has been read.
Children have a free choice of the books they read (based on their reading level) rather than having one assigned to them. This makes reading a much more enjoyable experience as they feel in control and can choose books that are interesting to them. The class teacher and Mrs Gardner, the school’s librarian, will help your child choose books that are at an appropriate reading level. These will be challenging without being frustrating, and will also be at a level at which your child can pass the quiz and experience success.
How does the school determine my child’s reading level?
Teachers determine your child’s reading level by using a STAR Reading™ test, a computer-based reading assessment program that uses computer-adaptive technology. Questions continually adjust to your child’s responses. If the child’s response is correct, the difficulty level is increased. If the child cannot answer a question or answers incorrectly, the difficulty level is reduced. Pupils complete this assessment three times across the academic year.
How can I help my child become a better reader?
As with anything, performance improves with practice. Encourage your child to read at home. Create a culture of reading in your household by reading with your child, starting a home library, visiting your local library or bookshop on a regular basis and by letting your child see you reading. When reading with your child, stop and ask questions to be sure your child comprehends what they have read and in general make a habit of discussing books that each of you has read.
Your child also has an ‘Accelerated Reader’ logbook, so please make a habit of checking this regularly and seeing how many books have been read. The logbook also contains key information regarding how your child has performed in STAR Reading™ assessments, as well as their current book level.
‘Accelerated Reader’ is accessible from home – https://ukhosted35.renlearn.co.uk/1896990/ – so please encourage your child to login and show you how the program works.
If you have any questions about the ‘Accelerated Reader’ program, please do not hesitate to contact me. Your support is greatly appreciated.
Mr B. Griffiths
KS3 English Coordinator