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What age for free reading?

(19 Posts)
Claire2009 Tue 09-Oct-12 22:31:44

At what age do children generally be at the free reader stage?

PatriciaHolm Tue 09-Oct-12 22:34:45

Define "free reading"....!

Different schools do it differently. In my DCs school, they have 13 levels of ORT, then an intermediate stage (think short chapter books like Astrosaurs, the Fairies series etc) and then Free Reader. DD made it at 7; I know a couple who made it at 6; lots don't get there til 8+.

other schools don't do "free reading" until year 6. It's a very moveable feast!

ReallyTired Tue 09-Oct-12 22:39:28

Ds wasn't a free reader until the end of year 3. However he got level 3 in his reading sats in year 2. My impression is that it depends a lot on the school. I don't think it does children any long term favours to rush through the reading scheme.

Many people confuse barking at print with comprehension. A child who can read stage 9 of ORT has mastered barking at print. Comprehension is a greater challenge.

simpson Tue 09-Oct-12 22:44:43

In my DC school you are a free reader after lime level ORT...

dontcallmehon Tue 09-Oct-12 22:47:26

Dd is in year two and a free reader- mainly as the lime books weren't suitable in content for her and the school library had more age appropriate books for 6 year olds at her level.

clam Tue 09-Oct-12 22:55:23

We stop the scheme after lime, although the "gem" colours (topaz/ruby etc..) are available for specific children in certain circumstances.
However, they don't go straight from the scheme to a free-for-all in the library. We select a range of appropriately levelled books for "free" access in classroom reading corners initially.
Out of my Year 4 class, there are currently about 8 still on the scheme.

TodaysAGoodDay Tue 09-Oct-12 22:55:51

The children at my DS's school work through ORT until Stage 14/15 then go to 'easy readers' then free readers. There is one girl in Year 2 already on easy readers, but there are 3 boys in Year 5 still on ORT Stage 14. It's very much dependant on the abilities of the child, and also how much reading their parents do with them at home. All children are different, as long as they enjoy reading, that's the most important thing IMHO.

marbleslost Tue 09-Oct-12 23:06:36

I think it depends on the school and the teacher. Our school goes to copper ort level then free reader.

There are one or two in year two who are free readers. But there are one or two who are on the first or second reading level at this age.

Mashabell Wed 10-Oct-12 06:46:02

This surely depends entirely on how well a child can read?

What books they should be reading or which ones appeal to them is a different matter.

chickydoo Wed 10-Oct-12 06:53:10

Ds was on free readers in yr 2 age 6.
He seems to love reading & always has his head in a book.

Bonsoir Wed 10-Oct-12 07:50:04

ReallyTired - "barking at print" is a very objectionable phrase! Do you mean "decoding"?

If you read the academic research on reading, it is a very rare child who is a fluent decoder but has no comprehension.

LeeCoakley Wed 10-Oct-12 08:20:43

We changed all our free reading books to lime after competitive parenting was making teachers lives (and children's) unbearable.

LeeCoakley Wed 10-Oct-12 08:21:15

Not rare in our school bonsoir.

LeMousquetaireAnonyme Wed 10-Oct-12 08:24:14

When they pick up a chapter book (like "the famous 5" not "noddy") and read it?

Bonsoir Wed 10-Oct-12 08:41:05

Are there a lot of EAL pupils, LeeCoakley?

wandymum Wed 10-Oct-12 10:32:55

I think the answer is in their own time.

Probably not what you are looking for but I think reading is like walking and talking - they all get to the same level in the end but the pace varies depending on how much the child is interested in books.

My 4 yo is apparently a 'free reader' in that he can read pretty much anything. His comprehension is good, he reads aloud with great emotion, pauses appropriately etc...

Of course, his reading choice is not really 'free' as so much is inappropriate for him at his age or conceptually too difficult.

seeker Wed 10-Oct-12 10:37:14

Very easy to be able to decode but not comprehend- maybe French is different?

My ds's party trick was an ability to read aloud practically anything from a very early age- with no comprehension at all!

KTK9 Wed 10-Oct-12 13:17:50

I think that is like asking 'how long is a piece of string'!!! All children will vary in their progress and surely even when they are confident readers, some need more guidance than others with their choices and encouragement afterwards, than a child is really enthused about reading.

DD is Year 3 and has been given Ginn Pocket Books, Level 8, they are more like chapter books, less pictures and more challenging vocab. However, the story lines are terrible, I listened to my normally bright and expressive (sometimes too expressive!), reader, deteriorate into a monotone last night, because she just didn't enjoy the book, it was a tedious story about a robot. But, it is on the list and she has to work through it. She would much rather read her own, Animal Ark and Pony books.

I loooong for the day she can choose her own school books!

Tgger Wed 10-Oct-12 18:08:58

Why oh why do they have to work through these tedious books? It seems a recipe for putting children off books rather than creating the love of reading we all hear so much about.

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