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#1 of 47 Old 08-20-2009, 04:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I just want to make sure I'm understanding this correctly.

I was on Hoagies' website today and gave Yusuf the reading test that is on there. (http://gleigh.tripod.com/readtst.htm)

When I asked him to read the words he got 14 correct which according to the equation means that his reading age is 6.4. Reading age 6.4 means that he has the reading age of an almost 6.5 year old, and that makes him about 1st-2nd grade level reading? Is this reading test accurate?

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#2 of 47 Old 08-20-2009, 04:36 PM
 
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Wow, he's made some real progress since that video you posted, eh? I would think 6.5 would translate to mid-first grade? I've used that one and some of the ones listed here. I think they're reasonably accurate...but of course, they only test one aspect of reading. Have you tried giving him a first grade reader to see if he will read & understand it on his own?
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#3 of 47 Old 08-20-2009, 04:59 PM
 
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I think these tests are sort of iffy. You're basing a lot on words that seem to be selected rather at random. I think you'd get a much better picture of his abilities by giving him unfamiliar books to read and checking their Lexile.

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#4 of 47 Old 08-20-2009, 05:02 PM
 
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Not to mention that this is really a pronunciation test, and discriminates against readers whose reading vocabulary includes words they don't know how to pronounce. A child could easily recognize the word "colonel" and have an idea of its meaning without pronouncing it right.

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#5 of 47 Old 08-20-2009, 05:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Wow, he's made some real progress since that video you posted, eh? I would think 6.5 would translate to mid-first grade? I've used that one and some of the ones listed here. I think they're reasonably accurate...but of course, they only test one aspect of reading. Have you tried giving him a first grade reader to see if he will read & understand it on his own?
Yes he has. It seems like every time I turn around he's on a different level. The words were easy words though, I thought. I've been trying to guage exactly where he is. I think a lot of words he's memorized now from seeing them so much and sometimes simple words he still feels like sounding out. Is that supposed to happen?

I have a lot of the Step Into Reading books. He does ok with level 1 by himself. He can read a lot of the level 2 ones with some help. He stumbles still.

I researched what reading level the Biscuit books are on, and on average it says 1.5 grade level, which he is able to read. The words he gets stuck on we go over together after he reads the story.

He struggles though with feeling intimidated by the amount of words per page. If there are more than 2 sentences in the large print, he feels a little bit stand-offish. Is it normal to feel a little intimidated by the amount of words per page?

Thanks for the link. On that one he got 30 right before he missed too many to continue. So that would mean he's on 3rd grade level? I don't know if this is right. Maybe some words are easier for him than others.

From that list the ones he missed were:

himself, size, between, weather, approve.. the harder ones. The smaller ones were easier. He was feeling sleepy, but I don't think he still would have been able to read those.

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#6 of 47 Old 08-20-2009, 05:25 PM
 
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Not to mention that this is really a pronunciation test, and discriminates against readers whose reading vocabulary includes words they don't know how to pronounce. A child could easily recognize the word "colonel" and have an idea of its meaning without pronouncing it right.
True. I actually marked DD right for "shepherd," even though she pronounced it "sheepherd" because that is how she always pronounces it, and she definitely knows what it means.

I guess I should also note that when I say "reasonably accurate" I mean +/- 1 1/2 grade levels, probably. I agree that finding the reading levels of books your child enjoys reading independently (and cold) is probably the best way of determining reading level.
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#7 of 47 Old 08-20-2009, 05:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I suppose his reading level is somewhere around 2nd grade plus or minus a little. I just can't see these reading tests as being accurate. I guess it's irrelevant, he's somewhere around there.

I found a list from the Dolch words and I'd say he knows the majority of those words in or out of context.

The majority of time I try to get him to cold read a story, and he does alright, but he does stumble on a few words throughout the stories. So like I said in a previous post we then go back and work on how that word sounds and what it means.

Who in the world first spelled the word, "colonel?" It absolutely makes no sense to me.

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#8 of 47 Old 08-20-2009, 05:34 PM
 
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6.4 years a child born in January of 2003 would have turned that age still in kindergarten. So I'd say a 6.4 would be finished K.

8 might be enough?
Or maybe 9 will be?
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#9 of 47 Old 08-20-2009, 05:44 PM
 
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I think a lot of words he's memorized now from seeing them so much and sometimes simple words he still feels like sounding out. Is that supposed to happen?

I have a lot of the Step Into Reading books. He does ok with level 1 by himself. He can read a lot of the level 2 ones with some help. He stumbles still.

I researched what reading level the Biscuit books are on, and on average it says 1.5 grade level, which he is able to read. The words he gets stuck on we go over together after he reads the story.

He struggles though with feeling intimidated by the amount of words per page. If there are more than 2 sentences in the large print, he feels a little bit stand-offish. Is it normal to feel a little intimidated by the amount of words per page?
Sounds totally normal. If he is still having significant trouble with grade 1 books (I think Step Into Reading's step 2 books are meant to be no harder than grade 1), I wouldn't necessarily say that he's reading at a first grade level...but with decoding skills like that he probably will be soon.
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#10 of 47 Old 08-20-2009, 05:47 PM
 
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Who in the world first spelled the word, "colonel?" It absolutely makes no sense to me.
I don't think I realized that "colonel" and "/kernel/" were the same word until, oh, college, or so.
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#11 of 47 Old 08-20-2009, 06:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't think I realized that "colonel" and "/kernel/" were the same word until, oh, college, or so.

In all of the debates with my husband about whose language is harder to learn, examples like these create a stalemate. Phonetically, his language and Arabic by far is easier than English.

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#12 of 47 Old 08-21-2009, 02:25 AM
 
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Isn't the test the OP posted a decoding test? We had lots of problems because ds could decode light years over what he could actually understand. So "reading" for him had nothing to do with enjoying the content of the book--it became a game of decoding words on a page. If we had relied on his reading level/age based on these tests, he'd have been reading at a 6th grade level at age 4.

Sounds like the OP is doing way more than just relying on this test to determine what's okay, but for the others who might read this going forward--just a head's up.

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#13 of 47 Old 08-21-2009, 04:13 PM
 
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Originally Posted by aishamama View Post
Yes he has. It seems like every time I turn around he's on a different level. The words were easy words though, I thought. I've been trying to guage exactly where he is. I think a lot of words he's memorized now from seeing them so much and sometimes simple words he still feels like sounding out. Is that supposed to happen?
Yes. Dd is reading about the same level as your ds and this is exactly what she does. She's got a lot of words that she's memorized and can sound very sophisticated in reading those, and then will struggle with a word like 'giggled' the first time she sees it.

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He struggles though with feeling intimidated by the amount of words per page. If there are more than 2 sentences in the large print, he feels a little bit stand-offish. Is it normal to feel a little intimidated by the amount of words per page?
I think this very much a personality trait. Ds was totally like this until last year. He COULD read at a 3rd grade level at the beginning of 2nd grade, but he WOULDN'T read books that had more than 3-5 sentences per page. Somewhere in the middle of last year, that shifted. He began to like to read chapter books by himself. I think that as your son becomes more confident in reading, he'll be OK with more text per page. But it may take a year or two for that to happen. Just keep reading fun!

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#14 of 47 Old 08-21-2009, 04:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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The tests are decoding tests I think. I thought they determined reading level as that's what they said. It's confusing because if they determine reading level then would that mean they must fully comprehend or be ablet to read at that level fluently?

Ironically or maybe normal (I don't know which) his comprehension is well above his reading own reading level. If he doesn't know what a word means he asks. We've never left a page that he didn't talk about what's happening. I had to define the word trick last night, as in Biscuit learns a new trick. So I told him let's read the story first and then we'll talk about it. I could only tell him after the fact, that when Biscuit learned to go get the ball and bring it back (fetch from the story), that's what a trick is. He defines things by giving me examples so that's how I define things for him.

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#15 of 47 Old 08-21-2009, 05:34 PM
 
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The tests are decoding tests I think. I thought they determined reading level as that's what they said. It's confusing because if they determine reading level then would that mean they must fully comprehend or be ablet to read at that level fluently?
Well, this is kind of my problem with the decoding tests: often kids can read a word (decode) and not know what it means (comprehension). I'm almost positive it's normal to decode at a much higher level than to comprehend. (someone here can verify). Thus--these tests might lead a parent to believe their child can read at a higher level than they can. In reality, they can decode at that level but may not understand the words on the page that they're "reading". The pitfall there is that if you don't have an attentive and engaged parent (specifically in the reading process) who is questioning and discussing it with their child as they read, you COULD wind up with a child that doesn't actually READ (take information in from a text) but can DECODE a whole book without gleaning much (or any) of the information in the book. BTDT... with me AND my son. VERY tough habit to break. For us, anyway.

I've never found a COMPREHENSION test online, but the school district now tests my son for this.

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#16 of 47 Old 08-21-2009, 05:41 PM
 
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I just ran this test on my DD and her level came back as 11yo.
At school her level is Grade 3.5 which = 8-9yo . Her school uses the STAR reading assesment, which uses speed & the ability to understand words in context.

So I guess it depends on you definition of reading level.
But we as parents usually prefer to focus on the higher number
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#17 of 47 Old 08-21-2009, 07:02 PM
 
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He struggles though with feeling intimidated by the amount of words per page. If there are more than 2 sentences in the large print, he feels a little bit stand-offish. Is it normal to feel a little intimidated by the amount of words per page?
It makes sense to me. Also there's a whole lot of things going on simultaneously when you read, and it could be his decoding skills are moving faster than other collaterol reading skills.

Also, his eyes may not be ready for denser, tighter-fitting text. He may need practice focusing on denser text.

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#18 of 47 Old 08-21-2009, 08:26 PM
 
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I think these tests are sort of iffy. You're basing a lot on words that seem to be selected rather at random. I think you'd get a much better picture of his abilities by giving him unfamiliar books to read and checking their Lexile.


For kids who have a higher reading level, but are still young/intimidated by many words, I think that the lexile list is the *best* resource because you can choose books with a higher vocabulary than interest level/form would indicate (for example, there are a lot of picture books out there with a 4th-5th grade reading level based on sentance complexity & vocabulary because they are meant to be read aloud. But the visual cues are for the children they are supposed to be read aloud to--- 4-6 year olds).

 

 

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#19 of 47 Old 08-21-2009, 11:10 PM
 
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For kids who have a higher reading level, but are still young/intimidated by many words, I think that the lexile list is the *best* resource because you can choose books with a higher vocabulary than interest level/form would indicate (for example, there are a lot of picture books out there with a 4th-5th grade reading level based on sentance complexity & vocabulary because they are meant to be read aloud. But the visual cues are for the children they are supposed to be read aloud to--- 4-6 year olds).
Ditto lexiles; there's a great chart in pdf on their site that outlines samples by grade level, and of course you can search by titles.

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#20 of 47 Old 08-22-2009, 12:21 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I had never heard of Lexile before. How would I know what Yusuf's lexile measure is?

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#21 of 47 Old 08-22-2009, 12:30 AM
 
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Using Biscuit as his developing reading level:
http://www.lexile.com/DesktopDefault...ywords=biscuit

As you can see, it makes a big difference which books he's reading as there's a large range.

Here's the map as pdf:
http://www.lexile.com/uploads/PDF's/...4-07_11x17.pdf

It looks like the highest biscuit books are early gr1.

Lexiles are good because they take into account decoding and complexity of text.

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#22 of 47 Old 08-22-2009, 12:41 AM
 
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When DD was tested for reading last year in first grade they tested 3 things (if I remember correctly)
--Decoding. These were all nononesense words and they got points if they were proncounced phonetically correct
--Speed and Accuracy. These were actual sentences with real words and they got points on how quickly and accurately they could read the paragraph (inflection and pauses in correct places were also noted)
--Comprehension and Retention. They were then asked questions about what they read and what it meant. Points were given for accurate answers.

I'm not sure then how each section was actually scored, but the scores than corresponded with a reading level that equaled reading levels. I know the teacher said the decoding scores were always much higher than the other two because decoding skills came first.
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#23 of 47 Old 08-22-2009, 01:04 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh Thanks!! If I go to a library will the librarian be able to help me find books according to the Lexile measure?

I have the whole storybook collection where there are about 10 stories. Since it's in 1 book the levels aren't written on the back that I noticed anywhere. The highest lexile is 300, and we've not even looked at that one. He can easily read Biscuit's New Trick, which is BR in the score section. He can read and understand Biscuit Wins A Prize and that is 190L, like not at the minimum of 200. So maybe somewhere just between 200 and 300.

So this is super helpful to find books around these ranges. I think it would make book buying a lot easier and more organized.

I learn so much from you all everytime I come here. I really appreciate all of your help, all of the time.

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#24 of 47 Old 08-22-2009, 01:09 AM
 
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[QUOTE=aishamama;14269337]Oh Thanks!! If I go to a library will the librarian be able to help me find books according to the Lexile measure?
QUOTE]

That will really depend on the library, but I doubt it. I know some libraries have a beginning reading section that they can point you to, but most library workers probably wouldn't know what you were talking about if you went in and asked for a specific Lexile measure. It'd probably be easiest if you make a list of books that interest you on the level you want and ask them to find the specific titles.
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#25 of 47 Old 08-22-2009, 02:16 AM
 
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Aisha, does your library allow you to place holds on books that you can then pick up? I remember from past threads that you've been buying books. This early reading stage can be very short and the library can be an affordable (free!) way to make it through the stage. I've saved the money I didn't spend on early readers and spent it on shelves and shelves of novels and non-fiction books that are joyously re-read by my kids.

ETA: I used to use reading levels and amazon to find books, then put them on hold at the library. If your library has a "children's librarian" they'd be able to help you as well.

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#26 of 47 Old 08-22-2009, 03:08 AM
 
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Aisha, does your library allow you to place holds on books that you can then pick up? I remember from past threads that you've been buying books. This early reading stage can be very short and the library can be an affordable (free!) way to make it through the stage. I've saved the money I didn't spend on early readers and spent it on shelves and shelves of novels and non-fiction books that are joyously re-read by my kids.
I very much agree with this, and this is coming from someone whose region doesn't even have a library! My kids went through the early reading stage so quickly (and I guess with minimal parental doting -- I honestly hardly noticed they were reading until they were fluent). We own the Arnold Lobel Frog & Toad books (lexile levels 300-400) which are entrancing, and those are the only easy readers we ever bought. My kids seemed to learn to read just fine without levelled readers and 'step into reading' series. We spend our book bucks on good quality novels that will be cherished and re-read over the years.

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#27 of 47 Old 08-22-2009, 03:33 AM
 
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Use this.

http://bookwizard.scholastic.com/tbw/homePage.do

This will help you find books at the same level as Biscuit, or see what level a book is at.

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#28 of 47 Old 08-22-2009, 06:18 AM
 
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Oh Thanks!! If I go to a library will the librarian be able to help me find books according to the Lexile measure?
No, but if they have a children's librarian, and you say "I want some stories at the same level as the Biscuit books" they should be able to help point you in the right direction. I just did that with books to read aloud to ds, since we'd hit a dry spell.

I second the scholastic book wizard too. I just used it tonight to find some new books to try for ds. I like it because it'll search not only by reading level, but age. So, I can put in ds' reading level (5.9) and his age (3rd grade), and come up with books to try. While his reading level is above his age, he's not interested in the themes that interest older children as much.

I also second the library. I rarely buy books. Maybe I'm just cheap, but ds doesn't like to read books over and over again anymore (somewhat of a relief from his toddler days!). So, once it's read, he's done. I have a few classics and a few that we got as gifts. We have most of the Magic Treehouse series, but dd will read those in the next year or so. Also a lot of the early reader books are really boring. It's not like you're getting great literature!

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#29 of 47 Old 08-22-2009, 11:29 AM
 
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Yes, we would never have made it through the eraly reading phase without the library, as DD reads multiple books a day.

Here is a list I've been working on of good beginning reader books...these are at various levels:

The Fire Cat—Esther Averill
Go, Dog, Go!—P.D. Eastman
The Best Nest—P.D. Eastman
Are You My Mother?—P.D. Eastman
Frog and Toad series—Arnold Lobel
Yoko's World of Kindness—Rosemary Wells
Young Cam Jansen series—David A. Adler
Nate the Great series—Marjorie Sharmat
Oliver Pig series—Jean Van Leeuwen
Little Bear series—Else Holmelund Minarik
Henry and Mudge series, Mr. Putter and Tabby series, Poppleton series—Cynthia Rylant
Fox in Love series—James Marshall
The Frances series—Russell Hoban
Rotten Ralph series—Jack Gantos
Harry the Dirty Dog series—Gene Zion
Amelia Bedelia series—Peggy Parish
Ant Plays Bear—Betsy Byars
Iris and Walter series--Elissa Haden Guest
Cowgirl Kate and Cocoa series—Erica Silverman
Commander Toad in Space series-- Jane Yolen
Bones and the Big Yellow Mystery (series) David A. Adler
Little Rat Rides, Monika Bang-Campbell
Duck and Company, Kathy Caple
Minnie and Moo Go Dancing, Denys Cazet
Walter Paints Himself Into a Corner, Barbara Gregorich
Dorrie the Little Witch—Patricia Coombs
Bright, Shiny Skylar (series) Valerie Tripp
Upstairs Mouse, Downstairs Mole, Wong Herbert Yee
Zelda and Ivy (series)--Laura Mcgee Kvasnosky
Houndsley and Catina (series)—James Howe

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#30 of 47 Old 08-22-2009, 11:50 AM
 
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My same-aged son is about the same level, and also gets discouraged by too many words on a page. He will read 2-3 lines per page but more than that and he won't even try. According to a friendly children's librarian, the early readers he is on are 1st grade level. He's been at the same level for a few months now and is less interested than he was at first.
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