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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Reading Levels

3rd grader Abby's reading level is J or K in the system her school district uses. Most beginning third-graders are at L or M, so she's doing okay - much better than this time last year (when she started the year at E instead of the average of H or I) and she no longer requires the specialized services of the reading resources teacher - she's back on the curve. Apparently her difficulty in reading is primarily due to her being such a very auditory learner; her comprehension is Harry Potter but her fluency is more Green Eggs and Ham. Or maybe more The Thinks you Can Think.

But... Harry Potter is what she wants to read. She's seen the first four movies (I won't allow the others until we've read the books that far - torture and abuse are not something I want to explain on the fly during an intense movie scene. Harry Potter varies from level T through level V for the first five books, and the last two are all the way at Z (which is where they expect them to be at the end of sixth grade).

So last night I let her read Book 1 in bed. She knows the context and all the characters (so sounding out words 
like "Dursley" is not a problem where it might otherwise be). It took her almost 40 minutes... but she got at least through the first chapter. I have a note in to her teacher (because in earlier grades they did not encourage "reading ahead" because the kids tended to get discouraged when their skills could not keep up with their interests) to see if it's Kosher. I think she can handle it now, where she might've indeed gotten upset earlier on. 

We shall see...