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What is the average reading level by this point of reception?

(66 Posts)
Adikia Fri 07-Feb-14 11:28:17

I don't mean what is your child on as there are some very smart reception children about, just what is the level DD should aim for?

My son is G&T so don't want to compare them plus he's 10, so I can't really remember where he was by this part of term other than him having better stories in his books.

RonaldMcDonald Fri 07-Feb-14 13:52:01

all mine entered reception not reading and by year 2 could read confidently

spend 10 mins a night and the school will normally highlight a problem

overmydeadbody Fri 07-Feb-14 13:53:22

There is no 'average', there are so many factors to take into account.

In my reception class half are still on pink, a couple are not really there yet and on purple, ten are on red and two are on blue.

The important thing is that they are all making progress and all doing well at their phonics, it just hasn't clicked into fluid reading for them all yet.

Compare that with my DS who started reception as a fluent reader <shrugs> . Most children catch up and progress as long as they are taught well.

efrieze78 Fri 07-Feb-14 13:55:39

My DD is in reception and is the youngest in the class. She has just moved on to Green but this is very high and higher than her older sister was at the same stage (and one of th eoldest in the class). I was always very aware of the stages/levels but what other people say is true, they do all get there in the end and they need to stick with learning the basics as fully as possible as some children eneded up having to go back to the beginning of the stages as they had missed some of the crucial phonics rules along the way. Good luck.

sixlive Fri 07-Feb-14 14:02:21

They all learn to read fluently in the end unless there is a problem. Only when they can't access the rest of the work because they can't read well then it becomes an issue so definitely not in reception. So many of the early readers are caught up or overtaken in yr1/yr2.

MrsCakesPremonition Fri 07-Feb-14 14:09:08

six, unfortunately 16% of UK adults are functionally illiterate and do not learn to read fluently. However, comparing levels in Reception won't help address that issue.

Hoogally Fri 07-Feb-14 14:10:18

This is all really interesting.

As I said uPthread DS has just moved from red to yellow but it feels like all his friends are shooting up levels faster.

I know this sounds crazy but I feel like they let them go up earlier in the other class. They won't move DS up until he has mastered the applicable "tricky/high frequency words" in addition to the digraphs/trigraphs. Whereas the other class focuses just on the blending and digraphs etc not the high frequency words.

I keep telling myself it's good he is learning the basics well but I worry he will get left behind.

He is amazing at his handwriting but they don't seem to push that, just his reading. He loves science stuff and gets maths concepts really well. But the reading he is so unconfident.

I read with him every night but I worry sometimes that I'm letting him down as I'm also tied up with his baby sister and I don't get why he isn't keeping up with his friends.

I worry I'm failing him and it will affect his future. So it's good to hear that these things have a habit of levelling out.

allyfe Fri 07-Feb-14 14:18:37

Hoogally If you read with him every night then you are doing a great job. Don't feel bad. There are so many expectations now days which I think just didn't exist when I was at school. The aim is always raise standards, but realistically, parents work, or they have other children, and reception children get so tired, so is it worth everyone slogging themselves to death to have a free reading child in reception? Honestly, I don't think so. Being able to read early doesn't raise your IQ level. It doesn't even necessarily represent your IQ level. And, IQ level is not directly related to success in academia or life generally. It is so much more about intellectual curiosity and passion for learning. Saying that, whilst part of me knows it, I find it so hard not to get caught up in the desire for my child to be doing brilliantly at school - but that is my issue to deal with!

3bunnies Fri 07-Feb-14 14:22:20

This chart shows ages and appropriate level - so red is part way through 4-5. I have found that it varies so much from child to child. Ds is about a year and a half ahead of his sisters in terms of when they read various levels - but I know dc who were free reading at the end of reception who are now at a similar stage to dd1 now that they are in yr4.

rainraingoAWAYNEVERCOMEBACK Fri 07-Feb-14 14:24:36


Same here, failing schools all round us.

Some MN think we should not ask questions or try and seek out knowledge.

In a country that is woefully behind others in Europe in reading and so on would say its critical to get gage of progress, and is going on.How we apply that is down to us as parents but we need to ask questions and know.

I am trying to gage reading levels on another thread,its like pulling teeth and wading trhough mud.

Hoogally Fri 07-Feb-14 14:24:43

Thank you.

I know I'm biased but I think DS is fantastic. He is endlessly inquisitive about the world, how things work, he has great fine motor skills read:can build stupidly detailed Lego stuff, has an amazing imagination and is really creative and he gets concepts really well.

But all they seem to focus on is reading.

I feel like so much of who he is, is missed. But maybe this will change as they get older.

allyfe Fri 07-Feb-14 14:25:08

But 3Bunnies that is what I don't understand - sometimes it says that yellow is level 3, but my DD is on level 3 but her colour is very much blue. In other places I've found ORT level 3 is blue. I guess it is a good way of addressing parent competitiveness, just put different information in different places and confuse everyone :D

rainraingoAWAYNEVERCOMEBACK Fri 07-Feb-14 14:34:36


My dd was also slow in reception it was literally the last few weeks something clicked and she is flying along now.

I think I would more worried if by age 7 they were still struggling. at this age they are on the cusp

GoodnessIsThatTheTime Fri 07-Feb-14 15:55:53

But hoo's child isn't slow... the charts linked above say level 3 yellow/blue is year 1so nationally he is ahead.

It's awful she feels he is behind sad

This is where schools and cohorts differ so much.

Honsandrevels Fri 07-Feb-14 16:05:22

I've looked at the reading chest levels but am confused dd's ORT books are green but say stage 2 phonics on them. Are the phonics ones different levels/colours?

3bunnies Fri 07-Feb-14 16:20:12

At our school they went through and retrospectively rebanded all the books, as there wasn't the money to buy all new books. Sometimes a book might have been level 2 when they used more learn and say, high frequency words and a mixture of methods. Now that they focus more on just phonics as a teaching method those books which might have high frequency words but phonetically more challenging could be yellow band because a child would not be able to decode it until they have covered more of the phonics syllabus. We are told to look at the colour on the book spine. Confusingly some books - eg Songbirds are almost completely one colour with a tiny tab on the side of the book saying it is another colour book band.

Dd1 went through when it was all numbered levels so I still get confused by which colour comes after another- especially when some colours look quite similar.

caffeinated Fri 07-Feb-14 16:28:44

Ds3's class high achieving infants 55-60% level 3 in reading at end of year 2 with 150 pupils per year group.

Class split into 5 groups
Group 1 is on level 3/yellow has been since just before Christmas
Group 2 is on level 3/yellow since Christmas
Group 3 is on level 2/ red since Christmas
Group 4 is on level 1/pink has been since October
Group 5 is on level 1/pink has been since November

There are 2 children that aren't in a group and reading level 5/green.

3bunnies Fri 07-Feb-14 17:01:12

Also remember that different teachers/schools have different policies to putting them up a level. Our school has some magic formula which seems to be a mixture of child's ability, teacher's preferences and parent pushiness. For instance twins in parallel classes might be able to read each other's books but could be on very different reading levels because one teacher likes them to be reading every single word quickly without decoding and only listens to them every few weeks whereas another teacher listens to them every week and is happy to put them up when they can decode most of the words. Another school insists that they read every single book at every single level as each book has a different emphasis on different sounds. A child of the same ability could be at different bands in the different schools/ classes.

BucketsnSpades Fri 07-Feb-14 17:59:55

I have just checked out 3bunnies link and DS bookbag. He is on blue books at his school. The content of the books looks exactly like the sample pages of the pink books on the link.

RafaIsTheKingOfClay Fri 07-Feb-14 18:53:30

Honsandrevels it's not that the phonics one are different colours.

There are lots of different reading schemes and each one levels their books in their own way. So for example, all level 2 ORT books, regardless of series have a green spine because that's the colour they chose when they created the scheme. All level 3 ORT have a blue spine.

Some school only use one scheme so they can easily use the scheme they have as it is set out. Other schools use a variety of schemes. Book bands were created to help these schools to group books from different schemes into roughly equivalent levels which are each given a colour. There are a couple of different banding schemes and some schools have created their own.

Blu Fri 07-Feb-14 19:34:26

DS couldn't read at all by this stage in R, I don't think.
He sailed out of primary with 5A SATS and is now tagged G&T in literacy in secondary.

Honsandrevels Fri 07-Feb-14 19:48:38

Thanks Rafa, that makes sense. The reading chest chart doesn't show green at all until a later stage which confused me, although I was pretty sure she hadn't shot through five bands without me noticing!

lalasmum17 Fri 07-Feb-14 20:17:33

I REALLY wouldn't fret about reading levels. The link to the chart from 3 bunnies might help you guess how the books your child reads link into the book bands (i remember trying to figure it out for myself and I am sure my DD's colours didn't correspond). I still think you should make a conscious effort to add a couple of new words to your child's vocab every day and explain the meaning. Later on, when they see a word and try to sound it out but it does quite work they can probably correct themselves having understood the context.

We had a sorry slog through ditty sheets in reception autumn term and I really did wonder why my daughter couldn't link noises to symbols. Then something "clicked" and we had books after a couple of months. Some of the older kids were reading school letters about clubs whereas my daughter was still at the stage of sounding out and summarising. With all the backwards writing and then, better still, starting to read a sentence then suddenly reading a word in the middle backwards I prepped myself.

Fast forward to year 2 she LOVES reading and those scheme books are a very distant memory.

Brightoncheery Fri 07-Feb-14 21:42:45

DS summer born, not reading before school, on orange, reads with ease but not being moved further as school considers that subject matter too old. Instead he reads books from school and public libraries, which he enjoys. He seems so little to be at school, so as long as he's happy and enjoying school I'm happy!

pyrrah Fri 07-Feb-14 21:54:20

Haven't a clue - DD's school don't do reading with sets of books so no way of knowing what level anyone is on. She has a huge variety of books come home from lots of different schemes and none.

I'm not really too worried about her level anyway. As long as she is enjoying school and enjoying reading and going forwards not backwards then that is all I care about. She's not the kind of kid who would take kindly to my 'encouraging' anything.

The school get phenomenal results so I'm just sitting back and trusting them to get on with it. If they think there is an issue then I'm sure they will let me know.

WidowWadman Fri 07-Feb-14 21:59:30

I've no idea what level my daughter is on, as the reading books she brings home (and the e-books she can access via school login) are too easy for her and she's flying through them.

We asked the teacher before to give her more challenging books, but were told we should feel free to let her read whatever she wants from the library, but the reading books from school have a different purpose, whatever that is. She's in the top group, so at least gets as much support as she can in her class, I guess.

She's a ravenous reader, however tends to do also a lot of circumstancial guessing, which means that nonsense words are not easy to her, as she'll first guess a proper word before slowing down and sounding out when asked.

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