Book several bands below reading level for table work?

(99 Posts)
aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 10:49:22

Those of you who can't stand threads about reading levels, turn away. DS got 3 for reading in his end of ks1 report, and has just started in year 3.

I know the teacher is probably getting to know the children for herself, but I'm wondering why, if she has access to the levels, she has given his table a book that is several bands below what he can read for himself?

He was confidently reading books at about NC level 4 last term, and continued reading over the summer. The book the children have been given for their literacy work is about 5 bands below this. The top table has been given a book of the correct level for its ability (NC5) from what I can see.

I know some of you will say relax, it's early days, but what alarms me is the internal inconsistency - correct level for top table, not so obvious why below actual recent attainment for his table?

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 11:08:52

Sorry, should add that part of my anxiety is that his reading level was wrongly assessed in year 1 until the literacy specialist got involved, but had a great year 2 when he really started to enjoy himself, thanks to a teacher who really understood his learning needs and pushed him just the right amount.

I'd hate it if he started this year with lower expectations.

mummytime Wed 08-Sep-10 11:23:08

Talk to the teacher, she may have a very good reason. Try to keep up with his reading via going to the library, getting books at home etc.
My DD is actually free reading, her first book was a fairy one, and now she's been encourage onto something the next step up (and ideal for her). But her school is much less tables, and book bands in year 3.

MrsDoofenshmirtz Wed 08-Sep-10 11:25:35

YOu say given the table is this a group reading book ? If it is guided reading they will be doing lower level books and discussing them.

Is "literacy work" the same thing as reading, or does it mean something more about studying the text in different ways? eg looking for similes and metaphors, looking at how they have used adjectives and adverbs, that sort of stuff?

If I'm assuming right there, then its not surprising or worrying if they are working on a book which is some way below what they can read proficiently, because they are using it for something different from just reading.

But do go in and talk to the teacher to make sure you understand each other. That clears up most roblems!

MrsDoofenshmirtz Wed 08-Sep-10 11:31:21

Thats exactly what I meant but so much better put. (smile)

singersgirl Wed 08-Sep-10 11:33:22

Is this for guided reading or do they have a system where every child reads the same book as their personal reading book? Both my boys have always read books way below their reading level in their guided reading groups - but of course the same was true for all the rest of the children in those groups. They use guided reading to talk about different aspects of plot/characterisation/use of vocabulary/inference/punctuation etc, so it doesn't much matter if the book seems 'easy'. But then for their personal reading each child can choose whatever book they want, once they're off the reading scheme - so from Y1 for most of the top group children. I would be more concerned if it was the personal reading book, and find it odd that all the children were expected to read the same one.

singersgirl Wed 08-Sep-10 11:33:57

Crossed posts with the two above!

seeker Wed 08-Sep-10 11:34:23

The book chosen for guided reading is often chosen for all sorts of reasons not necessarily related to levels - the subject, relevance to the children, because it's really funny, because the group like dinosaurs. It's not about readin, really, it's about books and stories, and sharing, and reading aloud and characterization and oh, lots of things.

Frankly I would be more interested in wondering why he's not on the top table if he got a 3 in year 2. Is is a very high achieving class?

lovecheese Wed 08-Sep-10 11:43:05

My DD has just started in yr2, so younger than yours, but she told me all through year 1 that the books that her (top) group used for guided reading were several "Colours" below what she was bringing home for personal reading. It is as the others have said to use a book for much more than actually reading it.

I would concur with seeker though about asking why he isnt on the top table if he was a level 3 in SATs.

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 11:46:08

Seeker, >Frankly I would be more interested in wondering why he's not on the top table if he got a 3 in year 2. Is is a very high achieving class?<

Yes, there is one exceptionally able reader and writer (read this summer holiday alone more than many children will have read by the time they leave primary school). Two or three ohers who are comfortable reading at NC level 5+, and quickly. So not quibbling about his ability relative to these.

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 11:49:06

AmuminScotland, yes, you're right, the book is used in these ways, and I can see the sense of doing this.

But then, why does the top table have a book that happens to be just a smidegeon below its technical reading ability?

Why doesn't the same logic apply to all the tables? Is it because (correctly) the teacher is making allowances for the maturity of the readers (DS technically able but still reluctant and much slower when compared to these more accomplished readers?)

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 11:52:31

seeker, thanks also. yes, your post is right on the money. The text chosen for the table work is used in much more complex ways than just reading, and the children interact with it in depth.

But I know for a fact that he could easily do this kind of work with an interesting chapter book just off National Curriculum level 4, rather than some babyish and narratively naive story that he finds unremarkable.

seeker Wed 08-Sep-10 12:50:48

Have you really got 4 children in a year 3 class who are reading at level5+? How do you know?

singersgirl Wed 08-Sep-10 12:55:30

I agree with seeker that it seems odd in Y3. DS2's class (now Y5) had lots of able readers who were reading books that might be classified as L5 in Y3, but I doubt if many were reading them at a L5 level, if you know what I mean. Also, how do you know that the book they're reading is at L5? I'd be really surprised if a primary school was teaching a whole group at that level in Y3.

About 35% of the year group were L3 readers in KS1, though, so at least the top 2 groups had all got L3s.

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 14:02:20

Seeker, yes, they are reading books at this level. He's told me directly what colour they are reading, and I've observed it directly myself at their houses or ours when they get stuff out of their book bags. He is one of the closest friends of the outstanding reader in the year, so see a lot of what and how that child reads.

seeker Wed 08-Sep-10 14:04:19

So your school has a colour band for Level 5 books? Or do they have it written on them or something?

I'm not being thick, honestly, but I've never heard of this before. Are you absolutely sure you've got it right?

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 14:14:45

Seeker, yes. They have a colour band for level 5 and level 6 books. The colour bands are even displayed in the classroom by year 3 and each book has a sticker on the front cover.

A full colour is a full NC level, and half colours are used to denote intermediate levels. The first 8 bands are reading recovery levels, then the system continues from NC level 2.

It goes:

Band 1: Reading recovery (RR) level 1-2, 1/2 pink
Band 2: RR level 3-5, half red
Band 3: RR 6-8, half yellow
Band 4: RR 9-11, half blue
Band 5: RR 12-14, half green
Band 6 RR 15-16, half orange
Band 7, RR 17-18, full red
Band 8, RR 10-22, 1/2 red, 1/2 yellow

NC level 2 full yellow
NC level 2-3 yellow/blue
NC level 3 blue
NC level 3-4 blue/pink
NC level 4 pink
Nc level 4-5 pink-orange
NC level 5 Oragne
NC level 5-6 Orange/Gree
NC level 6 Green.

JenaiMarrHePlaysGuitar Wed 08-Sep-10 14:15:32

Are there really colour banded, reading books at Level 5? I'd have thought Level 5 books would be something like Animal Farm. Or a bit of Stephen Hawking for those that prefer non-fiction. OK, perhaps not Stephen Hawking...

lovecheese Wed 08-Sep-10 14:34:11

Is this system peculiar to your school aegeansky?

seeker Wed 08-Sep-10 14:37:48

What's a level 5 or 6 book?

JenaiMarrHePlaysGuitar Wed 08-Sep-10 14:42:01

Are we conflating being able to read the words that one might expect a L5 acheiver to recognise, with actually working at L5 when it comes to English?

singersgirl is on to something I think when she suggests that the higher acheiving group are "reading books that might be classified as L5 in Y3, but I doubt if many were reading them at a L5 level"

Found this example of a Level 5 piece of English work.

seeker Wed 08-Sep-10 14:44:05

Are you absolutely sure ageansky? I am a bit surprised at the idea of a level 6 (whatever one of those is) book being in a year 3 classroom - pretty sure the content would be inappropriate even if a 7 year old could read it.

What is the book that the top table in your ds's class is reading?

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 14:54:33

Seeker, yes, sure about the chart being in the class, as I've seen it.

Not sure if there are any level 6 books in the class (but will ask DS) nor about the name of the book that the top table is reading, but will probably know by end of the week.

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 14:59:05


No, I'm talking about being able to read the book fluently and in some cases at unbelievable speed, not just decode words.

In the case of the top table, my point was precisely that the teacher has given a book that is close to the limit of some of the children's reading ability whereas in the uppder middles (only relatively - remember these were also level 3 attainers by end of KS1) she has gone below the level of actual attainment at the end of the KS1 assessment, so it's an internally inconsistent approach.

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 15:00:09

lovecheese, don't think so. I know other schools local that simplify by just putting the NC level on the front cover.

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 15:00:24

sorry, locally.

does he understand all the words he is reading and know their meaning? does he read with expression?

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 15:31:34


Yes, he has an excellent active vocabulary and a huge passive vocabulary. He is unlikely to find a word that he does not know in a story book at level 3. His factual vocabulary is even stronger.

Syntax is much more of a challenge for him in poorly written material at level 3 than in well-written material nudging towards level 4. (And come on, please, who hasn't seen inexplicably/unnecessarily challenging syntax in books written specifically for children?)

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 15:32:30


And yes, he reads with expression and appropriate pauses.

RollaCoasta Wed 08-Sep-10 18:58:23

How do you know what the 'top table' has been given? How do you get so much information about what 'level' books the children are reading? I find this truly scary..... hmm

The children have only been back at school a few days - give the teacher a break...

tartyhighheels Wed 08-Sep-10 19:32:57

I think you need to chillax lady - it is one book and not going to be of any consequence long term.

If it happens repeatedly then talk to the Teacher and ask why, it seems so simple and you are tying yourself in knots.

Hulababy Wed 08-Sep-10 19:40:08

What is an example of a banded book at level 5?

Just curious. most schools would have children as free readers way before that stage.

singersgirl Wed 08-Sep-10 19:44:10

Yes, I'm curious too, and even more curious about what a level 6 banded book would be.

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 19:53:49


Because I get feedback from my child. I don't even ask for it. This is his focus first, and then mine, not the other way round.

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 20:02:48


Right, some more info volunteered by DC today.
The whole class does literacy work around the same book, at the various tables. The exact challenges set vary according to the tables.

It's only for the silent reading/guided reading (DC used both terms but seemed to imply that the lower tables get help) that the colour coded books are assigned to the tables.

With this in mind, I'm not really so bothered, except that the level assigned to this one table is, as I said in my OP, way below DS's proven attainment. But really, so what? He read it quickly and got another one straight away.

And as others obviously believe this is making a hoo-ha about nothing, let's leave it right there. I trust the teacher and I'm sure these early days are just a time for working out what's going on and getting to know each child individually in the best way.

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 20:03:58

tartyhighheels, wish I could relax. I spent a whole year (1) relaxing, and wish I hadn't. Year 2 was brilliant, but I'm still nervous.

singersgirl Wed 08-Sep-10 20:05:08

But level 5 or 6 books will be long novels like Alice in Wonderland (just as an example), won't they? So the top table will be taking a long time to work through their books.

houseofboys Wed 08-Sep-10 21:05:33

This might be a bit off at a tangent but my son had a high level 3 for reading in KS2 Sats but is still on the one up from bottom table for literacy this year round. He doesn't like writing so I guess thats why (tho he managed a 2B). But he is the only one in the whole class to have gone through all book bands and pick library books instead (Harry Potter, Beast Quest, Asterix current favourites) and all the others on his table are on Gold level for reading. Is it that reading isn't included in 'literacy' work or am I just being dumb? He gets very depressed about tables and he would love to go to top table for something! Can anyone explain how it all works??

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 21:19:58

houseofboys, with you - you meant KS1 sats?

houseofboys Wed 08-Sep-10 21:23:58

Yes, KS1 - he's just started yr 3. His first comment when he came home was about the tables he was on, I really wish it wasn't so obvious to them. But I don't get the literacy ranking, though obviously appreciate his writing lags behind his reading quite a bit.

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 21:38:38

houseofboys, sounds like you might be right, there. If he had a 3 in end of key stage assessment, that must be the only reason why he is not on a higher table.

It is amazing just how much attention children can give to these supposedly invisible rankings. For my DS it's made worse partly because all his friends bar 1 are on the top literacy table.

houseofboys Wed 08-Sep-10 21:40:46

yes, likewise. My DS has kind of given up about getting up there as well which is most worrying.

seeker Wed 08-Sep-10 22:27:41

I'm still desperate to know what a level 5 or 6 book is - and who decides.

PixieOnaLeaf Wed 08-Sep-10 23:08:17

Message withdrawn

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 23:14:44

Pixie, yes, they are NC levels.

PixieOnaLeaf Wed 08-Sep-10 23:25:18

Message withdrawn

aegeansky Wed 08-Sep-10 23:35:01

They are not all banded. Have a look at my chart in an earlier posting. At about level three, they're mostly chapter books with a sticker on the front telling you the corresponding NC level with a colour code.

As I said, other schools simply put a sticker on the front with an NC level.

RollaCoasta Wed 08-Sep-10 23:39:03

How is your ds so conversant with all these 'NC' level books?? hmm
I'm with Pixie on this - I really can't understand what a 'Level 5' book would look like! (Well, apart from any regular teenage fiction book, that is. Can't say I've seen the level description on many of those though.)

How can a child be so aware of 'tables' and levels in Y3? How can a teacher have these set tables? Mighty weird IMO....

RollaCoasta Wed 08-Sep-10 23:46:32

Furthermore, children reading at Levels 5 and 6 are reading Shakespeare in KS3 confused

PixieOnaLeaf Wed 08-Sep-10 23:53:53

Message withdrawn

aegeansky Thu 09-Sep-10 00:03:00

Well, can't comment on how many parents know, but my child does, and I'm sure many do. What do you propose should be done about it? There's a chart on the wall telling them what the stickers mean, and they read it. It's not a big secret.

I know one child on that top table extremely well, and she is an outstanding reader by any standards. I don't know the others as readers, but it's the teacher's call.

aegeansky Thu 09-Sep-10 00:10:17

Rolla, it's futile arguing about it. DS got level 3 in his end of KS assessment. Great. And there are better readers in the class. There's a chart saying what the colour coded stickers mean in NC levels. It's all transparent. There's nothing sinister about it.

It's not a conundrum for me that there are children reading books at this level. Sure, if they read them again in a year, they'll get more out of them. Sure, if they read them again in 5 years, they'll get more out of them. But it doesn't mean they're not reading them now, with adequate comprehension.

RoadArt Thu 09-Sep-10 05:10:35

It would be useful if you could specify the reading scheme that the school uses. This might help us understand the levels.


seeker Thu 09-Sep-10 06:58:18

Could you name a couple of the books with level 5 or 6 stickers? What are the top table reading?

singersgirl Thu 09-Sep-10 11:03:45

I'd like to know too, just out of interest, not because I think it's suspicious. I know at my children's school, which is very high achieving by any state primary standard, they don't teach children to level 5 in Y3. I'm also curious how they handle the children all reading the same long difficult book.

aegeansky Thu 09-Sep-10 11:16:25

Hi Singersgirl,

Thanks for putting it that way. smile

I did ask my DS, very casually, if he could name the book on that table, but he couldn't. I didn't want to press him, as he is already wondering why he is not on the same table as nearly all his friends. If he introduces it into conversation, I'll let you know.

But just to make things a bit clearer: the overall literacy scheme is The Power of Reading. Everybody, from top to bottom, uses the same source text, with differentiated work-sheets, taking into account both reading and writing levels.

The colour-coded books I'm talking about are used for what used to be (KS1) guided reading, which is now, largely, silent reading, with support only given to the struggling lower sets. So essentially, the top 3 groups are left to read on their own.
As far as I can glean from DS, there is no interaction with these groups whatever during the session. I don't know the levels of these groups, except that DS was a 3 in his end of KS assessment and is what seems to be the middle group.

hellion Thu 09-Sep-10 11:51:26

We have a similar problem - just gone into year three, got three in his SATS and was a free reader for most of year 2. DS has now been put pack on white level (apparently they go white, pink and then free reader), and is reading really easy books.
Someone said to me the teachers often put everyone back after the long holidays as reading ability decreases.

I am giving him a week or so to settle in and then I think I will have to comment.

Ages ago someone put a link on here to the colour scheme that goes all through the school system, and it shows what colours refer to what ages. I am not sure where it is thought.

Dweble Thu 09-Sep-10 12:45:44

Not sure if this helps, but I have a list of Power of Reading titles for specific year groups...

seeker Thu 09-Sep-10 12:55:51

Ah! It does's the common confusion of National Curriculum Levels and school years!

Phew! ~for some reason I've been puzzling over this - so glad there's a simple explanation!

PixieOnaLeaf Thu 09-Sep-10 17:57:03

Message withdrawn

aegeansky Thu 09-Sep-10 18:07:55

Pixie, indeed. But in DS's class, there's the power of reading scheme (whole class) and then this separate colour coding scheme, which does follow the NC levels, for guided reading/silent reading and book bag.

Goblinchild Thu 09-Sep-10 18:18:09

I'd go in and ask the teacher if the level 6 books are NC level 6, as in those that are used in secondary for Y9. If the answer was yes, I'd be having words with the literacy co ordinator to clarify why.
I'd worry about the content and the concepts covered being inappropriate for Y3 unless they were mainly non-fiction. It seems a bizarre thing to do in a lower KS2 class.

PixieOnaLeaf Thu 09-Sep-10 18:20:21

Message withdrawn

bigfootbeliever Thu 09-Sep-10 18:22:44

I work in a middle school (9-13) and 90% of all the NC Level 5+ books we have are allowed to be borrowed by Year 7 & 8 only due to the more adult content/themes and the fact that the subject matter simply does not interest your average 9 year old (never mind a 7 year old).

These are Jane Austin, Bronte's, Shakespeare etc and we have simplified versions of these texts if any younger students are interested.

We have some excellent readers but not a single one reading at Level 5/6 when they join the school.

To have some at this level at age 7 must mean you've got an amazing school there ageansky.

clam Thu 09-Sep-10 18:51:45

Message deleted by Mumsnet.

aegeansky Thu 09-Sep-10 19:36:17

Clam, how rude! I don't need to get a life.
My son is my son. He gives me information. I don't stand over him. I don't needle him.

I just listen to him. You could be less judgemental and ask yourself why you need to make a personal attack against someone you haven't the first clue about.

You don't stress? Really? Great. Do you have children? confused You have no idea of my personal circumstances, of the school, or its track record, or of the reasons why I might be concerned. Have you read my posts? Have you taken in that he is concerned that he's separated from the majority of his friends under certain circumstances? If you have children, are you at all concerned about emotional and social aspects of their development and wellbeing?

Great that you've had hundreds of playdates without seeing inside another child's bookbag. Snap.

As I've said several times over, most of this information comes direct from my son, not from me poking about. I can't get a word out of him when I want to, so I just have to listen carefully when he does open his mouth.

On a lighter note -

Mumnset would probably cease to exist if everyone was in chillax mode! smile

aegeansky Thu 09-Sep-10 19:37:03

Who mentioned Skellig?

Goblinchild Thu 09-Sep-10 20:07:08

'Not sure if this helps, but I have a list of Power of Reading titles for specific year groups...'
Dweble posted this, Skellig and Goodnight Mr Tom are on it as Y6 readers. Both contain material that might be challenging concepts to handle as a Y3

aegeansky Thu 09-Sep-10 20:10:18

Right, before there are any further postings based on a misunderstanding, there is NO evidence that even a single child is reading a book at level 6 in DC's class. I haven't said this.

I said there was a visible chart explaining the correspondence between book colour codes and levels. I also said that the top table, FOR ITS SILENT READING, had been given a book with an orange sticker, which is NC level 5.

Any parent looking round the classroom, as we were all invited to last term, would have seen the chart explaining the colour codes. It's for the children! Presumably, the chart is used school-wide and has just been copied and is therefore used in a year 3 classroom.

These are facts, so I'm not going to argue about them. Any speculation in this thread isn't mine - I've read back through my postings. So can we please focus on my original question, which is very clear, if there's anything more to be said? smile

aegeansky Thu 09-Sep-10 20:12:38

But Goblinchild, please read my posts.

The NC level 5 book that SOME children have been given is NOT part of the Power of Reading scheme. It is for silent reading in ability groups. All the children have a year 3/4 appropriate book for the Power of Reading work in class.

Sorry to sound terse but I have explained this repeatedly. smile

Goblinchild Thu 09-Sep-10 20:19:59

You sound perfectly capable of going in and discussing your concerns with his current teacher. Perhaps you could suggest that she discusses what level your son should be reading at with his previous teacher, and come to an informed decision for him and his table.

aegeansky Thu 09-Sep-10 21:02:30

Goblinchild, thank you. smile

That is a very good suggestion. Actually, I hate going in an imposing on teachers, hence this cowardly alternative of posting on MN. But let's see if I can muster up the necessary.

I'll leave it a week and then decide.

seeker Thu 09-Sep-10 21:56:35

I'm so fascinated by this it's not true! (I am really really interested in how children learn to read, and what they read and the problem of finding age appropriate books for good readers). Please go and ask the teacher about it, ageansky, then come back and tell us. If there really are a table of children in a Year 3 class reading level NC 5/6 books I would love to know how the school did it. And what the books are.

For what it's worth, I have a very able reader, just starting year 5. Actually, I've stopped thinking of him as an able reader - he's just a reader. But I certainly wouldn't want him reading the same books as his sister was reading last year in Year 9. He could read the words, sure. I don;t think there is a word that he couldn't read, But the content would be mostly beyond him, or would bore him, or freak him out.

PixieOnaLeaf Thu 09-Sep-10 23:16:19

Message withdrawn

PixieOnaLeaf Thu 09-Sep-10 23:18:08

Message withdrawn

RollaCoasta Thu 09-Sep-10 23:42:29

Because, Pixie, the top group is reading at level 5 smile !!

hocuspontas Fri 10-Sep-10 16:55:24

aegeansky - I'm convinced your chart of book levels doesn't equate to NC levels. Reading recovery levels 23 - 28 cover NC level 3 according to my own LA chart and levels 9-14 cover NC level 1.

lovecheese Fri 10-Sep-10 17:18:21

Slinking in for a quick hijack, sorry...hocuspontas is your chart the same as benchmark assessing?

hocuspontas Fri 10-Sep-10 17:59:11

Don't know about that but this is the chart I was referring to.

aegeansky Fri 10-Sep-10 18:35:30


your levels aren't incompatible. I couldn't be bothered to show the corresponding NC levels below level 2 as they weren't that relevant to this conversation.

Please, please, let's not quibble about it. It's a chart of NC levels!

aegeansky Fri 10-Sep-10 18:36:31

Sorry hocus, the chart you have just posted has nothing to do with the one I'm talking about - colours have completely different meanings.

clam Fri 10-Sep-10 20:27:54

Has anyone here read "May Contain Nuts?"

CecilyP Fri 10-Sep-10 23:58:29

Yes, really funny.

nlr Thu 23-Sep-10 10:38:53

Hi all, I'm new to mumsnet. Does anybody know what kind of books(colours/schemes) like Ruth miskin the harrow schools follow for year 2 kids?

cory Thu 23-Sep-10 11:15:41

Seeker, children do matter widely in maturity of understanding as well as ability.

Dd was able to discuss the plot construction of The Lord of the Rings (which I read aloud to her) aged 6 and draw perfectly reasonable conclusions as to authorial intentions, so she was obviously able to understand the plot and keep it in mind. By age 8, she had read the trilogy for herself and a whole lot of other books that she would certainly never have been allowed to get out of the school library- not because they were all scary or explicit, but because the school deemed she would not be able to understand them, therefore she must not try them.

Dd is bright, but not freakishly so. Her cousin had read as much at the same age and so had I.

I can well imagine a school being able to rustle up a table (that is, 3 or 4 children) of similar abilities, if that kind of family happens to be living in the area.

I believe dd might well have been put off reading if she had only had access to the school library, as she found the books she was allowed in junior school very babyish. As it was, she just accepted that school reading was work you did, and the reading at home was what you did for pleasure.

Personally, I never bothered to keep track of dd's reading books, as it was such a tiny proportion of the reading she did. My parents never pushed me to read more difficult things, but the books were there... I would never stop a child from reading a book because it might be difficult or bore them: to me, reading is about finding out what you like and what bores you. (Though I would try to dissuade them from stuff that might give them nightmares, obviously.) But I would understand that a school might not be able to cater for all interests in the classroom.

aegeansky Thu 23-Sep-10 12:28:42

Cory, thank you, as your post is very supportive of the facts underlying my OP. You very perceptively say 'I can well imagine a school being able to rustle up a table (that is 3 or 4 children) of similar abilities, if that kind of family happens to be in the area. '


There are two schools round here (in a community that otherwise has pockets of staggeringly deep deprivation) where I'd say 25% of the new cohorts and rising are from families where books are everywhere at home and both parents read a lot and demonstrate enjoyment of reading to their children. In probably 10-15% of these families, at least one parent writes in some capacity related to their work and that is foregrounded and the child knows about it and refers to it as a desirable thing.

It's a very, very, big advantage if children grow up talking about ideas and feeling that it's natural to read for fun and write for pleasure.

Libra Thu 23-Sep-10 12:44:22

Can I just agree with Cory that I never worry about the level DS2 is at with the school reading scheme because of the immense amount of reading that he does outside school?

He is 7 (P4, which I believe is the same as Yr3?) and we are still on the ORT reading scheme with mind-bendingly dull stories. However, such stories are attached to the workbooks that the class does and therefore he benefits in that way - writing does not necessarily come as easily as reading to him.

Since he is reading one of his father's academic textbooks on myths at the moment in order to make comparison with the Percy Jackson books, and also taking a PJ book into school for 'golden time' use, I have no worries about his reading and really don't care what reading stage he is at in the reading scheme. Seriously, does it really matter that much?

cory Thu 23-Sep-10 13:18:24

Ime often all a child needs is the recognition of the discrepancy between what they can do and what they are currently doing-and if at all possible some explanation of the teacher's rationale.

-Yes, dear, I know it must seem odd to you to be reading about Kipper when you have already read The Three Musketeers. I think it might be because it's a different kind of reading though. Never mind, it doesn't mean we think you can't read.

Dd and I had a good many laughs about silly library rules and that (and the reassuring feel of the city library card in her pocket)was enough to resolve her worries.

frantic87 Sat 09-Oct-10 23:57:14

I think you may have misunderstood the colours. NC level 5 would be a book which be very unlikely to appeal to a yr 3 reader, however confident a reader they may be. A 7/8 year old is not going to get much out of a book for much older children. I am talking about books like holes by Louis sachar, The hobbit, Private peaceful by michael morpurgo.

mrz Sun 10-Oct-10 10:41:29

I haven't read the whole thread so apologise if it has already been said but aegeansky's table is incorrect

NC level 4 would be sapphire book band 13 reading age 11 -12 years RRL 27-30 sion/wave3/documents/ks_1-2_levels_bk_bnds.doc

mrz Sun 10-Oct-10 10:49:27

2 1 Pink FSP < 5 read age
5 2 Red FSP 5
8 3 Yellow 1c 5½
11 4 Blue 1b 5½ - 6
14 5 Green 1b 5½ - 6
16 6 Orange 1a/2c 6 - 6½
18 7 Turquoise 1a/2C 6½ - 7
20 8 Purple 2c 7 – 7½
22 9 Gold 2b 7½ - 8
24 10 White 2a/3c 8 – 8½

SofaQueen Sun 10-Oct-10 11:37:50

I am thoroughly confused by this book band/NC level/reading scheme levels!

Ignoring the specifics of levels/bans, if I understand correctly the OP is saying that her son's class is exceptionally able and her son, whilst being a very good reader, is not amongst the top 4-5 in his class. Her concern seems to be that her son's table has been given a book for their literacy work which is significantly below her son's reading level whilst the top table has been given a book only slightly below their reading ability.

Aegean, if you are very concerned, why not just ask the teacher directly? However, could the answer be that literacy is not just about reading skill, but about spelling, comprehension and writing ability also and that the difference in these levels and the reading age of the upper table is small and that there is a wider gap in these areas at your son's table?

In terms of the reading abilities of your sons class, I agree that it is remarkable, but not impossible. Additionally, if the school he is at is able to push that number of students to such reading levels (at least ten way above the expected NC levels), perhaps you should trust what they are doing.

mrz Sun 10-Oct-10 11:51:09

aegeansky Thu 09-Sep-10 20:10:18

I said there was a visible chart explaining the correspondence between book colour codes and levels. I also said that the top table, FOR ITS SILENT READING, had been given a book with an orange sticker, which is NC level 5.

I think there is a great deal of confusion/misunderstanding... a book with an orange sticker is unlikely to relate to NC level 5 (unless the school has some completely bizarre system unique to them)
In most systems orange equates to NC level 2

Out of interest do you know his reading age or the titles of any of the books

bigfootbeliever Sun 10-Oct-10 13:19:04

Despite being asked for the titles of the books they are reading loads of times, ageansky has never got back to us.

Pleae do - we are genuinly interested because it seems to fly in the face of everying I know about able 7/8 year olds in the schools I've worked in.

stoatsrevenge Sun 10-Oct-10 13:19:46

I thin all this is just misunderstanding. The OP is talking about 'The Power of Reading'. I imagine they have colours associated with books. (?)
Anyone use this CLPE scheme?

bigfootbeliever Sun 10-Oct-10 13:23:56

Please excuse my awful spelling errors - I'm trying to roast a chicken while MNing at the same time.

mrz Sun 10-Oct-10 14:20:19

The Power of Reading project doesn't have book bands from what I gather. I know Cumbria have linked books used for POW to the book banding colours which wouldn't match up to the list aegaensky posted. The project is a literacy project aimed at improving children's involvement in reading and writing with a focused sequence in the lesson
Spelling and vocabulary
Response to text
Focused questions about the text
Grammar / Response to text
Writing task

mrz Sun 10-Oct-10 14:23:17


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