What Is Accelerated Reader?
An Informational Overview for Parents
Accelerated Reader (also known as “AR”) is a district wide reading program which will help to “accelerate” the process of learning how to read well and becoming a good reader. Accelerated Reader gives students immediate feedback as to how they are doing. This individualized program is focused on each student’s individual reading ability levels.
You may have heard your child talking about AR. Accelerated Reader is a school-wide program at Mountain Trail Middle School. The following are some “AR buzz words” you may hear your child talking about, and what they actually mean:
ZPD Level: (“Zone of Proximal Development”) Each child is tested on the computer for an individual reading ability range. The students take a 25- question online reading comprehension test. The number of correct responses will determine their reading range. For example, a child may have a reading range of 4.0 to 7.5. This means that their comfortable reading range where they will be most successful in reading books will be in the range of 4.0 level books all the way up through 7.5 level books.
Book Level (Reading Level): A book level is a way to measure the difficulty of a text, which includes both context and vocabulary words.
Interest Level: The interest level of a book relates to the content and appropriateness for a given age group. Students should choose books in their reading range that are at their interest level.
LG= Lower grades, K-3
MG= Middle grades, 4-8
UG= Upper Grades, 9-adult
Points: Each book is assigned a point value based on its reading level, interest level and book length. Each point is roughly equivalent to one hour of reading practice within a student’s reading range. Point levels range between 0.5 (one-half point) and 130 points.
Quizzes: Each time a child reads a book in his/her given reading range (ZPD Level), they can take a quiz on the computer. Most books will have quizzes of between five and twenty questions. The program allows children to score a 60% or higher to pass a quiz. Points are prorated based on the percent correct. For example, a student who scored 80% on a quiz will earn 80% of the point value. If their score falls below the 60% range, they have not passed the quiz for that particular book and will earn no points.
What Does a Quiz Score Mean?
A score below 85%:
(1) The book may be too long for the student
(2) The book may be too difficult for the student.
(3) The student may have read the book too quickly and didn’t pay enough attention to details.
(4) For a lower level book, the child may need to read a book a few times before being ready to take a quiz.
A score 60% and Above: The student has comprehended a sufficient amount of text to pass a quiz. The higher the score, the better the student has comprehended the text and vocabulary within the book.
TOPS Report: The computer program automatically generates a TOPS report each time a student takes a quiz. This computer report lists quiz results, and school year results to date.
Reading Log: This is an individual log for students to keep a record of what books they have read, their quiz scores, and the book levels of the books they have read. Logs are signed by teachers during AR time in class. If a student reads at home, parents should sign the log as well.
Certification Levels: Once students have read a certain amount of books or accumulated a set amount of points, the computer tells the students they have achieved a given certification level. The levels are:Ready Reader, Independent Reader, Rising Reader, Super Reader, Advanced Reader, Star Reader and Classic Reader. Teachers print out certificates and award them to those students who have successfully completed the requirements for each level.
AR equals overall success for everyone!
The more they read, the more they know. The more they know, the more they grow!