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How well can your 6 year old (Y1) read?

(12 Posts)
deliverdaniel Sun 08-Jan-17 04:23:11

Hi- we live in another country where they only start teaching reading at age 6 (ie a year later than in the UK) so DS just started learning this school year. We are moving back to the UK soon. DS will be in Y1 with kids who are in their second year of school. At the moment DS is one of the best readers in his class (I'm not bragging- the standard is VERY low)- he can read probably the equivalent of something like the Gruffalo reasonably well, with a handful of stumbles/ mistakes, but couldn't read a chapter book for eg and reads with us, rather than on his own for pleasure.

I would love to know how well your child of this age can read to know what to expect when we move back. I don't know book bands or anything- but can you give an example of a well known book/ type of book or general explanation of the level and whether your kid is average/ below or above in their school? I don't want him to lose confidence as he was doing so well, but also don't want to worry unnecessarily if he isn't going to be too far behind the other kids.

Thank you!

JerryFerry Sun 08-Jan-17 04:40:47

It varies so much. Maybe have a look at this to get an idea?

But in a class of year 3 children you can have children still on entry level books and others with a reading age of 13+ so I doubt he'll be "behind" or "ahead".

If I look at my own children's reports, there is also a variation of almost 3 yrs in their reading ages at the same point/age in their schooling. So I'm sure your son will be fine!

Shutthatdoor12 Sun 08-Jan-17 04:47:28

My ds is 7 and reading non picture books now and has been for a while. They have chapters in. He reads every night after school for about 15 minutes. Then they get tested at school. He recently got tested on 2 books he read over Christmas and got 100% on each of them. They then get rewarded at school and home. Hth

PurpleMcPants Sun 08-Jan-17 04:55:05

My 6 year old reads chapter books, like Diary of a wimpy kid. Afaik, she's way ahead of the other children in her year. I have two others who are older but I can't remember what they were reading, I know they weren't anywhere near that level though. It varies so widely.

ShanghaiDiva Sun 08-Jan-17 05:14:49

I have been helping with reading in year one in an international school for over 7 years and there is a massive range at this age. In the classes I help with at the moment, I don't have anyone who could read a chapter book - most are on yellow/blue level and a fair few on pink.
If you look at the link Jerry posted above this will show you where these colours fall in the reading scheme.
I would keep reading with your ds at home, but I don't think you have anything to worry about regarding his level. Also, progress with reading is not linear - I have seen children make massive leaps, then plateau for a bit and another jump forward.

shouldwestayorshouldwego Sun 08-Jan-17 06:08:16

I would agree that it varies widely between children, schools and even siblings. I seem to remember that the Gruffalo was a ORT level 9 (now changed to colours but that is around a yr2 level) with a few trickier words, but I don't know where I gleaned that info probably on MN . The problem of course is that few children will have reached the age of 6 in the UK anyway without having the story read to them first. Dd2 could recite reams of Harry Potter because she has a great memory, but couldn't read the words out of context.

If your child is 6 and going into yr1 then they will be one of the oldest and that makes a difference. Also the school will be looking not only at decoding ability but also comprehension.

Schools vary widely too the level in a pre-prep could be very different from that in an average state school, but in some state schools the level might be very high. Dd1 more or less tracked/ slightly ahead on the ORT scheme but she was behind many peers at her leafy middle class school. Overtook many in junior school and now towards top in English in a Grammar school. Dd2 really struggled and it is only really in yr5 that she is catching up but she is doing so at an accelerated rate. Ds was reading Harry Potter in reception and is now in yr 2.

If your son sat next to 6yr old dd1 he would think he was average, he would think he was ahead next to dd2 and way behind ds. I would be more concerned that he knows his phonics and the Maths curriculum because that is where children in class are likely to be differentiated more overtly in different groups.

He probably will be behind in something because to be honest the curriculum is rather brutal now and you are unlikely to have covered it all. On the flip side he has enjoyed those extra few years of childhood in a way in which some reception/yr 1 children don't. He is older and so better able to understand that the children in the school have been there longer. He still has loads of time to overtake other children.

It is worth encoraging him now to value the effort that he puts in rather than his place in the class. Dd2 found it really hard when ds overtook her in reading but I tell her that she has learnt to persevere as well as read and that is a great skill. Her determination is paying off and she is catching up with him again. I hope that the move goes well.

germainegrainne Sun 08-Jan-17 08:18:37

My ds is 6 and in Year 1. He is doing well, though not excelling as such. I'd say he is average/slightly above. He is currently on Level 6 of ORT.
He is not particularly interested in reading and he is nowhere near reading chapter books. He could, very slowly, make an attempt at a chapter book but he wouldn't want to. He will read a few pages of a Horrid Henry Early Reader for reading practice but never for fun and never more than a few pages at a time. Similarly he could read The Gruffalo (but wouldn't unless told to) but it would take him ages to read the whole thing. His 3 year old sister regularly tells him he is a very slow reader grin
Your son sounds like he is doing very well.
I think the average levels for Year 1, based on the Reading Chest website are levels 4, 5 and 6 split roughly by term.

germainegrainne Sun 08-Jan-17 08:25:34

The website also gives some examples of books at each level which will give you an idea

deliverdaniel Sun 08-Jan-17 15:58:47

Thanks so much everyone. Sounds like he will probably be ok (or at least not very far behind.) he will be going into year 1 mid year and has a sept birthday so one of the oldest in the year. It seems so high pressure now in the U.K. I am actually glad he had a couple of years without that.

Thanks again.

shouldwestayorshouldwego Sun 08-Jan-17 22:26:45

Yeah some schools really pile on the assessments from yr1. In fact we moved ds because he was getting so stressed. It's not good for some of them. Hope you find a lovely school and he settles in quickly and makes friends.

deliverdaniel Mon 09-Jan-17 02:39:07

thank you! really appreciate it :-)

Newyearnewbrain Mon 09-Jan-17 03:06:47

Deliver my DD6 is in the same position as you, educated outside U.K. and sounds like she's at the same level as your DC. In the last couple of months her reading skills have really grown. Your DC will be fine.

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