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Yes, another blinkin' reading question

(21 Posts)
lovecheese Wed 12-Jan-11 16:09:52

There has been much discussion on MN about children being "Free readers" at school, and at vastly different stages, so it seems.

My question is at what National Curriculum level are children considered FR's in your school? Are most schools regarding lime level, stage 11, NC level 3 the target? Just gathering experiences really as, quite against the norm for my Dc's school, there are grumbles amongst some parents as to the length of the reading scheme. Any input welcome, thanks.

IndigoBell Wed 12-Jan-11 16:37:08

Old school lime was free readers, New school have to be at least Y5 before you can bring in books from home to read.....

flickaty Wed 12-Jan-11 16:43:25

at dd's i think that they have to finnish all of ORT 15 or so levels? once they have done that then i think that they are free readers and can pic own chapter books from library. i dont think that even the brightest from year2 are free readers yet as dd's school is not one to rush them through, her teacher in particular is very hot on reading comprihention.

All schools are really different with regards to free readers, so will be interestimg to see what other schools are like.

ragged Wed 12-Jan-11 17:17:28

No Friggin idea, and am amazed that anybody knows (unless they are also teachers at the same school).
DC2 carried on a bit about becoming a Free Reader (she had to campaign a bit for it, I think). I have no idea when DC1 achieved FR status, and doubt DC3 will have any idea, either.

Why does it matter?
I get most of DC's reading material from the public library, anyway. Can't expect the school to do it all.

IndigoBell Wed 12-Jan-11 17:39:50

Ragged - you know because you know when your elder child stopped bringing home Biff & Chip and either started bringing in stuff from home, or started choosing novels from school.

PatriciaHolm Wed 12-Jan-11 17:43:08

I think ours goes to level 11. We have some Y1 kids who are there already.

magicmummy1 Wed 12-Jan-11 18:04:50

I know because the teacher wrote in dd's reading record that she was moving her on to free readers in order to give her more challenging material. She moved from the lime book band. As for NC levels, I have never really understood how (or if) they are supposed to equate to the book bands anyway.

mrz Wed 12-Jan-11 18:07:21

Well our children never get Biff and Chip and we consider free readers to be working at NC level 4+

ragged Wed 12-Jan-11 18:32:00

Honestly, I didn't notice the cessation of Chip & Biff, DC school has a unified reading scheme with lots of different reading schemes.

lovecheese Wed 12-Jan-11 18:56:04

ragged - re your question about why it matters. Because at my Dc's school there are numerous levels and sub-levels to plough through, and I have a yr5 child for whom having to read a scheme book when she was already a level 5 for reading and enjoying a huge variety of books at home was unnecessary torture.

randombaking Wed 12-Jan-11 19:18:18

My ds became a free reader in yr 2 or 3. I was hugely relieved as Biff & chip were pants - SOOOOO boring. No idea what level he was on but he definitely didn't get to the end of any scheme. Worked well for us as it gave him more motivation as the choice was far more diverse & interesting with free reader books. He's in year 6 now and an avid reader.

lovecheese Wed 12-Jan-11 19:33:05

randombaking (by the way, do you randomly bake?) Quite, a sure way to kill an able child's love of reading is to make them continue with scheme books "Because that is school policy"

pointythings Wed 12-Jan-11 20:36:35

DD2's primary only goes to Yr4 (3-tier where we are) and this is reflected in what they have in the library - DD2 was off the ORT books by the beginning of Yr 1 but read lots of books from other schemes which were more interesting and more fun, as well as free reader-type chapter books. She's now in Yr3 and in collaboration with the teachers she is bringing books in from home because they haven't got the material to challenge her - she's working at a 3a/4c. There are a lot of good quality children's books around to support this, but schools don't have the time or the budget to chase this and I don't blame them - this flexibility works for everyone, and DD enjoys the books. She gets listened to every week, reading out loud plus talking about the book to assess comprehension - school policy seems to be to do what is best for the child, I'm happy to say.

pointythings Wed 12-Jan-11 20:37:13

BTW I too bake, though not randomly smile.

redskyatnight Thu 13-Jan-11 13:28:49

DS is still on the reading scheme (his books have a school added colour band) but he is bringing home "normal" books - the reading scheme books stopped quite a while ago. The school has a deliberate policy of letting children read "real" books rather than just reading scheme ones. DD can only read simple words but even she is bringing home "real" books mixed with the reading scheme ones.

Is DS a free reader then? I'd presumed he wasn't confused Actually I suppose I don't really care ...

mrz Thu 13-Jan-11 17:03:01

I would consider him not to be a free reader as he is reading books within a banding scheme not picking any book

mrz Thu 13-Jan-11 17:45:25

Are most schools regarding lime level, stage 11, NC level 3 the target?

We aim for stage 14+

Fifidelaszlo Thu 13-Jan-11 23:14:55

There is no agreement in the profession about how book bands equate to NC levels. My v experienced Yr 6 colleague thinks top of Book Bands is about a Level 3A.

mrz Fri 14-Jan-11 17:27:17

Except the DCSF published a list here

mrz Fri 14-Jan-11 17:30:59

and here

DisparityCausesInstability Fri 14-Jan-11 17:35:27

Lime was the end of the reading scheme but the last few colours were torture - kids had no choice of their reading material and it made many of them despise reading - and who could blame them some of the books we had home made Biff & Chip look like Booker prize material!

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