Assessing Your Child’s Reading Level

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FAiry Tales Online

One of the most essential things to understand when raising your child is trying to determine their reading level. This enables parents and teachers to create a foundation from which to build on. There are many tests out there that claim to be able to measure your child’s reading level.
But the question is not about knowing the next exact level – it is about understanding just what reading is and where your child is in this process. If you have not stopped to consider this important part of the process, now is a good time.
Reading is not about just knowing how letters and words are formed and what the words mean, which most assessment tests measure. It’s about understanding what your child reads and its importance.
If you think that a child is not able to understand certain concepts at a higher or deeper level, ask yourself when the last time your child said something that had you wondering, “Where did they get that idea from?!” Imaginary friends often come from books as well as television programs or Internet videos. What is important is connecting reading to ideas.
There are three major groups that need to be assessed before reaching a conclusion about your child’s reading level: word recognition, fluency, and comprehension. Your child needs to know the words they see, connect a string of words into a meaningful idea, and understand the idea. It is not about knowing a lot of words as knowing a lot of words does not make one a good reader. What’s more significant is if they can put the words together and understand a complete thought.
When reading a simple storybook such as Cinderella, a child understands what a princess is and her importance. This may cause you to pause, but a child has no desire to want to be a bad princess or a poor princess. They understand.
Another example is the storybook The Ugly Duckling. They may not see themselves as ugly but can relate to the idea of not being accepted by their peers. They understand the importance of that as well.
Several very important points need to be made when determining your child’s reading level. The first is you do not have to do it alone. You can get assistance from your local school, or assistance may be available at your local library. Know your limitations concerning this because it is vital for your child.
Another point is to not to use your adult mind as the evaluative tool for the assessment. In other words, consider the developmental and analytical stages of your child. Everyone wants to believe they have an exceptional child in the academic sense, but different children grow at different rates.
Most children books have a number on the back of them to serve as a loose guide for the reading level of the book. Use this as a baseline, but not as absolute truth. Moreover, try not to compare them to other kids you may know. This will only discourage your child.
What’s most important is to remain enthusiastic about your child’s development and willingness to read. You never want to do anything that will discourage them from reading more. If that means letting them read their favorite book over and over again, then that is okay. In the end, what’s important is that your kid is reading! If you allow your child to grow at their pace, their reading ability will develop normally.