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Marriott
Marriott asks:
Q:

My 6 year old daughter loves reading but is bored with the books given in school. Please help!

Member Added on Jun 15, 2009
I have, eventually, been able to talk to the teacher and the school's literacy co-ordinator.  Apparently, her reading level is based on some instructional level assessment(do you know what this is?) Her reading book has been decided according to her ability to answer comprehension questions,  on the reading book in a grammatically correct manner! This is not consistent in the school - our son, year 1, has been moved up from level 4  to level 11, because the teacher realized his reading books were too easy.  Our daughter was assessed in at the end of Year 1 and was on level 25 yet was only given a book at level 8 at the beginning of year 2.  Since our meeting, she and all but three of her reading group were moved up two levels to level 20.  All the books used are from Oxford Reading.  The content of  the books is still too easy.  She loves reading all kinds of books and wants a more difficult, challenging reading book.  What questions do I need to ask?
Does anyone know what this "instructional level assessment" is?

Also, is it only optional to have individual parent/class teacher meetings?  We have not been offered an end of term meeting with the teachers.  (We do not need one with the Year 1 teacher, because she has kept us informed of his progress throughout the year.)

I desperately need help, thank you.  
In Topics: Helping my child with reading, Motivation and achievement at school
> 60 days ago

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Expert

Sylvia HS
May 24, 2009
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What the Expert Says:

Dear Marriott,

In thinking about your question, I'm trying to picture the reasons why reading at home might be different from reading at school.

Your daughter's reading level may be above the level of the books that are being given to her at school.  That could be one reason why she feels bored.

At school, if the class is discussing a particular story, they might be spending a lot of time talking about it, and less time reading it.  This could be boring to your daughter.

Many times children say they're bored when, actually, something is too hard for them.  I don't know if this would be the case with your daughter.

At home, she chooses the books she wants to read.  At school, they are often chosen for the students.

At home, you and she have time to sit close to each other, to read and share a book.  At school, she's with a group of people (large or small) and she has to wait her turn to say what she wants to say and read what she wants to read.

You could ask for an assessment of your daughter's reading levels, by a reading specialist.  Sometimes, schools have a qualified person at the school who can do this.  If the school doesn't have an in-school person, they have access to a district reading specialist who can do this assessment.

You could discuss with your child's teacher the reading level of the books that are being given to your daughter in the classroom, and compare this to her assessed reading level.  Your daughter's teacher, herself, may have done an assessment of your daughter's reading level.  You and your child's teacher will want to match the material she is reading at school to your daughter's reading level.

The above matching is critical.  Also, of course, it's important to match her interests to the books she reads.  In the classroom, it's not always possible to do this matching, precisely.  But at home, you can match reading level and interests very easily.

By the way, a quick way to tell if a book is at a "just right" reading level is to do the 5 Finger Test.  Count 100 words in a book.  Have your daughter begin reading.  Each time she doesn't know what a word is, put down one finger.  If you bring down 5 fingers, then this book will likely be too hard for her to read by herself.  If it seems too hard, and yet she's interested in the book, then you can read the book to her.

For instance, the children's book, "Charlotte's Web", is written at a junior high reading level, and yet many children in the early elementary grades are interested in it.  This kind of book can then become a listening book.

Sincerely,

Sylvia HS
Reading Specialist
Author


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Additional Answers (8)

kat_eden
kat_eden , Parent writes:
Hi Marriott,

I'd take her to the library and let her talk to a librarian to talk about subjects she's interested in.  The librarian should be able to point her to books that will keep her interest (and fuel her love of reading).  My six year old has gotten hooked on a number of "Series" books - he goes for ones that are more targeted for boys but there are a bunch that are interesting to girls.  Once she's hooked on a series you can just stop by the library whenever she's getting to the end of a book and pick up the next one for her.

Good luck!

Kat
> 60 days ago

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Eadie
Eadie writes:
this is quite funny beacuse i had the exat same problem when i was in primary school
soo my anwser is to go to the school and ask them to give her higher level reading possibly books you have chosen that you know they will enjoy and gain better reading experiance from
And don't forget to encourage her while you still can, as it might just be a phase and its pretty difficult to get them back into it when they go off books
so just get her some more advanced books
the bigger the better
hope this helps
> 60 days ago

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MissTeach
MissTeach writes:
Most schools do DRA- a reading assessment.  In my school we are required to do it as classroom teachers.  Ask for her level DRA, guided reading, Lexile or grade-level in reading.  Scholastic.com has a 'book wizard" you can imput this information and find books that your daugther might enjoy.  As her what part of school is boring- it might be the books read aloud or in the text- kind of hard to control.  But if it's her independent reading books or library time- then helping steer her to the right books may change this! If the class does "book nook" or parent readers offer to come in and let her pick the book/books you'll read.
> 60 days ago

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LDSolutions
LDSolutions , Child Professional writes:
Very often children do not enjoy the reading at school, mostly because at school it is hard work.  It is usually skill driven, such as reading for comprehension and meaning.  Sometimes challenging activities are involved.  At home, reading is usually a fun bedtime routine with mom and dad.  Stories get chosen by the child and it is a nice, pleasant experience.
> 60 days ago

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jj511
jj511 writes:
check out these very affordable printable activities at www.littlebackpack.etsy.com    They are preschool and elementary activities made by a former elementary teacher.
> 60 days ago

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BruceDeitrickPrice
BruceDeitri... , Teacher writes:
Go to the library. Wander around. See what she likes. Go to a book store. Wander around. See what she likes. Go to a store with a big selection of magazines. Or buy a selection of all the easy magazines. She what she likes. Or ask your friends with older children for all their rejected books. See what she likes.

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vaishallee
vaishallee writes:
A 6 year old child will love to read books which illustrates colourful pictures.A child tries to relate things that she reads and sees. So a book with words that are easy to comprehend, pictures to relate to events and with larger font size would be apt. A story book would be the right choice, I believe.Something that would satisfy her hobby to read, enhance vocabulary and be her best friend always. : )
> 60 days ago

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beem80
beem80 writes:
Hello,

I am not sure what level is your daughter at reading.  But you can try this website www.readingeggs.com.  It is very challenging reading program for her.  I know she will love it.  Go check it out.  My daughter love this reading program.

Good luck.
> 60 days ago

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