Advanced search

Does anybody know how the Usborne readers fit in with school reading levels?

(20 Posts)
MilaMae Thu 25-Mar-10 12:11:17

Are they harder,easier,same levels?


MrsWobbleTheWaitress Thu 25-Mar-10 12:15:04


MilaMae Thu 25-Mar-10 12:37:50

Because My dd is flying through her books so I need to pad her out but don't want to give her books that are to hard/easy and put her off.

Is that okhmm?

MilaMae Thu 25-Mar-10 12:41:08


NoahAndTheWhale Thu 25-Mar-10 12:43:48

DS has some of the usborne readers levels 1 to 4. He is about purple/gold reading band I think and can read all of them, although probably needs a little support with level 4. He was probably around blue ish level when he could do level 2 maybe. I wouldn't worry too much though - read them to and with her and if she finds it too hard, you do the reading.

MrsWobbleTheWaitress Thu 25-Mar-10 12:44:33

no need for the hmm!

I was asking because we have found that just filling our house with all sorts of ages and stages of books is helpful. Our oldest sometimes wants to read easy stuff, and sometimes wants to have a go at something harder. You'll only put her off if you force her to read something she doesn't want to - if it's just her choosing something because it's hanging around and looks interesting, then it can only be good for her.

If you had been asking because you specifically wanted to be working strictly within the school guidelines, then I wouldn't have been able to help.

MilaMae Thu 25-Mar-10 12:56:47

I have a house filled with all books at all levels thanks Wobble.

I also ex literacy and an ex primary teacher for many years so I know how it all works.

I have no intention of forcing her with anything,just wanting to pad out the books from school doesn't automatically mean I intended to do that.

Her school doesn't have many books on her level so I'm padding her out at home rather than having her fly up the scheme too early. Giving a child real books that are too hard can put them off too so I wish to give her books at her level. I don't have the real books list for her level if I did I'd give her real books as it is the Usborne books are lovely and leveled so I'm going with those.

MrsWobbleTheWaitress Thu 25-Mar-10 13:38:11

Ok, very, very sorry indeed for trying to help!

<notes down not to bother answering any other posts by Mila for fear of reprisals>

cory Thu 25-Mar-10 17:43:07

Mila, mrsWobble does have a point; it depends on the child. Not every child is put off by something that is more difficult than they are used to, some positively thrive on challenges and are not easily daunted.

And books are difficult in different ways: something like an Usborne book is not necessarily levelled exactly like the ORT books, but may still be right for a child at a particular ORT stage.

At the end of the day, you know your dd better than any reading programme can do and will be best placed to judge exactly the kind of difficulties that will put her off. With my own I found that long words were easier for them to read than short ones and that a story that really motivated them was not going to put them off however difficult.

cory Thu 25-Mar-10 17:45:16

Perhaps it was awful of me to let dd attempt the Lord of the Rings before she was even considered a free reader by the school, but it certainly hasn't put her off literature, far from it.

Marne Thu 25-Mar-10 17:53:36

Dd1 completed 'fantastic Mr fox' a few weeks ago even though she was far from being a free reader.

I would be looking for things she will enjoy rather than levels. Dd likes poem books as she can choose which poems to read/which ones she likes.

The Usborne books are good but like the ORT once you have read a few they get a bit boring.

How old is she? What level is she reading at school?

MilaMae Thu 25-Mar-10 18:07:17

Children being given books that are consistently too hard does put them off,I've seen it time and time again when teaching. With more able readers you need to tweak it and constantly monitor it otherwise they will be turned off.

I had 1 son who was a free reader in rec and 1 in y1,I wouldn't have dreamt of giving either books that were too hard. It was a constant juggling act and I noticed when they were given books too difficult it most certainly did put them off for a while. The free reader in rec loves challenges but I made sure he read books at his level that stretched him (that is different than giving him books far too difficult) as he was ready for them,he is and was an avid reader as a result.

I'm not going by ORT levels at all but by the colour bands they use in school which use a variety of books some real and various other scheme books of which ORT is included. The Usborne books fit in with these levels and are nice looking books. By choice I'd refer to the real books reading list but I don't have it for her level so the next best thing is Usborne that fits in with the colour bands used by her school.

As much as I love real books there is a place for leveling. My dd is fantastic with reading key words she has learnt by sight however she needs practice at reading words with the particular level of phonemes she has learnt.

Oh and if it was left to her she'd be reading the stash of Roald Dahl chapter books she's eagerly wanting to read,she will attempt to read a sentence and give up as they are simply too hard. Once she's had a few months decoding using the phonemes she's learnt I've no doubt she'll get there.

Not sure why I have to justify all this I simply asked for info on Usborne books.

MilaMae Thu 25-Mar-10 18:10:03

She's 5 and on Orange band. To be exact I think she needs harder Green level books and the easier Orange(there is a huge range in both levels).

Somebody posted the real book list for every level bar Green and Orange if anybody has it that would be great.

MilaMae Thu 25-Mar-10 18:14:13

I think her level is 6 but I think it should by 5/6.

MrsWobbleTheWaitress Thu 25-Mar-10 18:29:57

But who cares if she picks up a hundred books, tries them, and then puts them down, as long as she's happy doing that? She'll just go backwards and forwards a bit until she finds a book that's just right, and that will hook her. My DD1 (6) has done just that then got hooked on those crappy rainbow magic books, but it's reading so I don't really care. She's got bored of them now. Has tried Roald Dahl and got on with some of the shorter ones, but then got hooked on the Clarice Bean books. She loves reading her younger sisters books and will work her way through five or six of them in a little snuggled up on the sofa session.

Hate this 'free reader' gubbins!

Surely a child being given a hard book to try, is completely different from a child picking up a book themselves and trying it? If she's in control she won't be put off.

I think what I'm trying to say is, maybe just get a whole load and leave it up to her to decide which ones she wants to read...?

MilaMae Thu 25-Mar-10 18:35:22

Also I don't think the importance of building confidence in early readers should be underestimated. It's so important to make young readers feel they're good at it,if you give them books that are too hard they just think they're crap at it.

My dd has 2 very able readers as brothers both of whom she constantly compares herself to, she needs her confidence built up not knocked down by reading books that are too hard and simply not at the correct level.

She is teetering at the moment,in a couple of months if her brothers were anything to go by she'll be feeling more confident and will be really flying until then I want to give her reading material that will support her reading in school and will stretch her out sideways not up.

TotalChaos Thu 25-Mar-10 18:40:56

I'm a bit baffled - as an experienced literacy teacher, can't you just gauge for yourself whether the books are appropriate for her level or not?

I would guesstimate that Usborne Level 2 is roughly equivalent to ORT level 4 or 5(using past tenses) and Usborne Level 4 is roughly equivalent to ORT Level 7 or 8.

MilaMae Thu 25-Mar-10 19:18:34

I'm not going by ORT levels but by the colour bands and levels which are different. The Usborne levels seemed to vary within the level and to be different again. I couldn't make head nor tail of it. Somebody kindly gave me the info I wanted it's Usborne 3.

WheresMyWaistGone Thu 25-Mar-10 22:21:25


I'm an Usborne Rep. I can send you a doc re the Book Banding of all the books in Reading Programme if you like. Drop me a line:

Hope that helps!


Onceuponastory16 Sat 13-May-17 18:42:46

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: