Primarily Key Stage 2 children will take a STAR Reading assessment 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 misses a question, the difficulty level is reduced. The test uses multiple-choice questions and takes approximately 25 minutes to complete. After undertaking this assessment the class teacher is then provided with a range of information related to your child’s reading ability. This includes: their reading age, the difficulty range of books that your child should be reading (ZPD) and how children can be supported to improve their reading comprehension. In independent literature-based reading, ZPD is the range of books that will challenge a child without causing frustration or loss of motivation. Your child will receive a ZPD range after taking a STAR Reading test. It’s important for children to read with a high degree of comprehension and within their ZPDs. After completing the STAR Reading Test, your child picks a book at their own level and reads it at their own pace. When finished, your child is then able to take a short quiz on the computer or ipad. Time is available every day for children to compete Accelerated Reader quiz. (Passing the quiz is an indication that your child understood what was read.) Accelerated Reader gives children and teachers feedback based on the quiz results, which the teacher then uses to help your child set goals and direct on-going reading practice. Children using Accelerated Reader choose their own books to read, rather than having one assigned to them. This makes reading a much more enjoyable experience as they can choose books that are interesting to them. Teachers help your child choose books at an appropriate readability level that are challenging without being frustrating, ensuring that your child can pass the quiz and experience success.
If your child does not do well on the quiz, the teacher may help your child:
• Choose another book that is more appropriate.
• Ask more probing questions as your child reads and before your child takes a quiz.
In most cases, children really enjoy taking the quizzes. Since they’re reading books at their reading and interest levels, they are likely to be successful. This is satisfying for most children. Best of all, they learn and grow at their own pace. According to research, children who read at least 35 minutes a day with a 90% comprehension rate (average percent correct) on AR quizzes see the greatest gains. Therefore, your child should have at least 35 minutes set aside for reading during each school day. At Earl Spencer, we have timetabled a reading session in school each day for 15 minutes. Each child is then expected to read at home for 20 minutes each day. As with anything, performance improves with practice.