Parent Information Leaflet
Donibristle Primary School
You have been given this leaflet as your child is about to embark on a block of Accelerated Reading as part of their Literacy work in class.
This leaflet is designed to give an overview of the programme and to answer any questions you may have. If you require further information, please do not hesitate to contact me at school.
What is Accelerated Reader?
AR is a computer based programme that helps teachers manage and monitor pupils’ individual reading practice. We use this as part of our approach to reading in our Primary 4 – 7 classes. Please be aware, this is only a small part of our approach to reading at Donibristle and is focusing mainly on Reading for Enjoyment.
The approach works with children sitting a computer based assessment called Star Reader. This is done independently on the class area computer. Using the results of this test, the teacher provides the child with a range to chose texts from. This range is within their ZPD (Zone of Proximal Development) and ensures the child is reading a text neither too easy or challenging.
Using the information from the Star Reader test and taking into account the length of the Accelerated Reading block a points target is set.
This target is very flexible. If a child feels pressured or wants to be challenged more it can be amended accordingly. Sometimes it is appropriate for a child not to have a target but to accumulate points over the course of the block. We look upon each child individually.
Each week during Accelerated Reading, the teacher will review each child’s progress and share some of the text that the children are reading to monitor appropriateness of text choice.
How does it work?
We have a large range of novels and some non-fiction texts in our library which are colour coded to match our range of levels. This choice, hopefully makes reading a more enjoyable experience as they can chose to read books which are interesting to them. This very much supports the “personalisation and choice” aspect of Curriculum for Excellence. Teachers will help direct children to appropriate texts and where possible will encourage a child to pick a text of appropriate difficulty.
As this library has a wide range of books, occasionally we find some content is not appropriate for younger pupils. If you find this is the case, please do not hesitate to contact the school or write a note to your child’s teacher. We check all book blurbs and dustcovers prior to placing in the library. Our library is similar to a public library; we strive to have a wide range of texts and content to interest the range of pupils using it.
Children can also read books that are not in our school library. To check if a book from home or from the council library has an Accelerated Reading quiz, please log on to www.arbookfind.co.uk .
The child then reads the book at their own pace and when finished, sits a short test on the computer using their individual username and password.
When the test is completed, the results are shared with the class teacher. If a child does not do well on a quiz, their teacher may:
choose another book that is more appropriate.
Ask more probing questions as your child reads and before taking a quiz as part of ongoing monitoring.
Pair your child with another pupil or as part of a group to enjoy the text together. In some cases, it is also appropriate to read the text to a pupil and monitor their comprehension through the quiz.
How much will my child read?
According to research, children who reads at least 20 minutes per day and are reading texts within their ZPD range will see the greatest gain.
We set aside 3 – 5 half hour blocks in class each week and ask that children take their book home nightly to enjoy further reading at night time.
How can I help my child?
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, visiting the local library or bookshop and discussing texts you have shared.
When reading with your child, stop and ask questions to be sure your child comprehends what they are reading. Reading with your child, no matter what the child’s age, is an important part of developing good reading skills and a lifelong love affair of reading.
We are grateful to the parents who have already donated texts to our library. This enhances our range of texts further and is appreciated very much by staff and pupils.