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Reading age assessment

(15 Posts)
fuctifino Wed 05-Nov-14 06:46:07

Is assessing reading age a new thing?

At parent's evening, I was told dd2's reading age when she first started in yr4 and that she will be assessed again in January. Curious as to how they assess as it was a very specific age confused.
Never had this with dd1, yr 8.

mrz Wed 05-Nov-14 06:51:53

No for example the Schonell reading age test has been around and used in schools since the 1960s

nonicknameseemsavailable Wed 05-Nov-14 12:01:20

they have been used for years, if anything I think they are used less now than they used to be? I am not sure they tell you much. if a child has been taught phonics properly then they can get a high reading age on some of the tests because it is just about reading words or sentences but that doesn't mean they understand any of what they are reading.

Some schools, especially private ones from what I gather, seem to like to use them and I think some teachers use them as a way of working out what level reading books children should get but I am not sure it is hugely accurate.

maizieD Wed 05-Nov-14 22:24:02

I think some teachers use them as a way of working out what level reading books children should get but I am not sure it is hugely accurate.

Well, no, it isn't because the 'reading ages' assigned to books are no more scientific or accurate than are reading age tests.

nonicknameseemsavailable Wed 05-Nov-14 23:01:49

well quite but they still do it

Bordersmummy Wed 05-Nov-14 23:44:23

Funnily enough I was thinking about this earlier today. My DM regularly reminds me of the reading age that my brother and I had when we were in Y1. Apparently our (different) schools both did this as standard. This was in the mid 70s/early 80s. She wanted to know how my DS (an early and fluent reader) compared. I have no idea and had assumed that schools don't do it these days as I've heard no mention of it round our parts (or on MN, really, apart from this thread). I'd be quite interested to know, but only from a comparative generational curiosity really.

By the way, the reading ages of my DB and me at 5 correlates in precisely no way with our end of school exam results grin.

NerfHerder Wed 05-Nov-14 23:57:12

We did the Edinburgh reading test every year at primary school, presumably to check we were progressing year-on-year.

LittleMissGreen Thu 06-Nov-14 09:16:58

We did 'single word' reading age tests when I was at school.
Our school now seem to do more 'comprehension' reading age tests so not just can you decode a word but can you understand what the word means as well.

erin99 Thu 06-Nov-14 09:23:18

Our junior school normally assesses the reading ages of the struggling ones only, on entry to Y3. This year they did everyone. I think it might be to do with tracking progress with the new curriculum and abandonment of the old levels, but I don't know. DD was given a reading age and a comprehension age.

I remember doing the tests as a child. Take the actual number with a pinch of salt, but it still gives a guide.

fuctifino Thu 06-Nov-14 21:05:55

The thing that baffled me was how precise the age was. Eg. Not 12 but 12.2.
How can they accurately measure the difference between a 12 and a 12.2 year old?

mrz Thu 06-Nov-14 21:09:20

It's based on the number of words read

fuctifino Thu 06-Nov-14 21:49:57

Wow, for some reason I had it in my head that it was more scientific than that.

Thank you smile

Green18 Fri 07-Nov-14 15:30:51

Hi, I work in a primary school and administer the reading age tests. They are called Salford tests. They have just been overhauled so that they do not just test what a child can read but also what they understand. Children are tested twice a year usually in September and March and their score is measured against their chronological age not school year.

Green18 Fri 07-Nov-14 15:37:11

These tests are in addition to Reading comprehension tests taken alongside writing assessments. We use them as a measure of progress and so that the correct reading book can be given. I think there are 10 sentences to read, increasing in difficulty, and they get a mark for reading the words correctly and another if they are able to answer a question about the sentence. For example, the first easy sentence is something like: The pencil is red. The question might be: What do you use the pencil for?

mrz Fri 07-Nov-14 17:05:42

It is more scientific than that in that the words used have been carefully selected and start off simple becoming progressively more difficult. Tests have been "tested" and the results carefully examined to ensure results are consistent.

There are dozens if not hundreds of tests on the market and you can expect the reading age from one to be different to the reading age when using another so it is far from "accurate"

Some tests are straightforward lists of words (Schonell and Burt) that the child reads, others like the Salford and PERA tests require the child to read a series of progressively more difficult sentences and the test ends when the child has made 6 errors (on highlighted words) it will also provide a separate reading comprehension age, then there are cloze procedure reading tests (NFER) which require child to select the missing word from the list provided in order to complete the sentences.
Most tests will also provide standardised scores and percentile ranking.

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