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could someone explain reading levels please?

(11 Posts)
jennnnnnnnnn Mon 15-Dec-14 16:58:34


My child is at nursery in Scotland. He is 4. He has been able to read since before he started at nursery so obviously he is pretty good now and can read anything that is put in front of him.

Anyway he came home the other day and said he had been doing reading with someone and had got to level 11. . Then a few days later he came home and said he got to level 15 and they were going to try more levels another day. The nursery folk haven't mentioned about this reading thing to me so I'm not going to bother asking them about it as I'm happy to let them get on with it. I assume it's to do with going to school next year.

Anyway I've tried to look up reading levels on the internet and on here etc but I cant seem to find anything that relates to numbers, it seems to be colours that people talk about.

I'm sure he didn't come up with this out of the blue so I assume whoever has been doing it with has told him these levels.

I have asked him if he knows the name of any of the books he was doing so I could figure it out that way but he said no he can't remember (this is the answer to everyday question of what did you do at nursery today so that's not unusual!) All he said is that he just read a few pages of each book so doesn't really remember what they are about etc.

Obviously it doesn't matter in any way but I am just curious and would like to know what it refers to in case the nursery folk talk to me about it some day etc.

I don't really know anyone with young kids at primary school age to ask so I thought I would ask here.


diamondage Mon 15-Dec-14 17:20:49

There are two main number schemes that are linked to the colour bands PM & ORT / Collins Big Cat.

For PM level 15 is equivalent to orange, whereas ORT / Collins Big Cat level 15 is beyond the 11 KS1 colours and near the end of KS2 (think year 5/6) so they represent totally different reading stages.

Of course it's possible that they use their own number system in which case you'll need to ask or get a book title.

You can also check yourself with the free ebooks found on the Oxford Owl website.

Hope that helps!

KatoPotato Mon 15-Dec-14 17:24:19

Also in Scotland and in P1 they are following the Storyworlds system which is colours?

DS is also 4 and is on level 11, his classmates are on stage 1, with one other child on stage 2.

jennnnnnnnnn Mon 15-Dec-14 18:00:26

Thanks. It seems very confusing having numbers and colours and different ones using different numbers etc....

Katpotato that link just send my computer into meltdown and have to reboot!

So how do you know about this level 11 thing that you said your son is on and other guys at stage 1 or 2 etc? Did they do this reading test thing at your nursery too?

diamondage Mon 15-Dec-14 19:13:23

Storyworld only seems to go to level 12!?!

mrz Mon 15-Dec-14 19:31:53

It seems likely the school is using PM benchmarking assessments which are based on Reading Recovery levels.

jennnnnnnnnn Thu 18-Dec-14 21:31:07

Oh well. I'm none the wiser. Nursery said its someone fron the school that's been doing it and they dont know anything about it.

I found a document online with these reading recovery levels. Appears to be orange coliur books that correspond to level 15. So I will try and find some of these online to see what they look like......

Mashabell Fri 19-Dec-14 06:55:38

Reading levels are about the kind of words that children can cope with,
from the simple 'a fat cat sat', and 'stop not on hot spot'
slightly more complex 'plain, rain, train', 'came home late',
and the trickier
'treat, great, threat', 'here, there', 'home, come'
to long and perhaps tricky as well (supercilious, lieutenant, echoing).

Vocabulary and comprehension come into them too, but it's not an exact science.

It's an English thing, because in English some words are trickier to decode/read than others. In other European languages children learn to decode and can then read and easily teach themselves to read anything. So there are no reading levels or regular tests of reading ability.

mrz Fri 19-Dec-14 17:02:27

I'm afraid that isn't how book banding works masha

maizieD Fri 19-Dec-14 17:13:50

to long and perhaps tricky as well (supercilious, lieutenant, echoing).

Goodness me! Whatever level do those words come in?

(Mind you, I once saw a book with a supposed 'Reading Age' of 6 (yes, six) containing the words 'porsche' and 'lamborghini' shock )

mrz Fri 19-Dec-14 17:58:10

MaizieD I'm sure there is a Big Cat book aimed at reception containing the words Porsche, Lamborghini and limousine

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