Independent Reading Levels: Everything You Need to Know

This is a standard a reader attains, in which he/she can boast of reading and understanding without requiring help from an external source. Children’s independent reading level is generally determined from books they can read with no more than just one error in word recognition in every hundred words and demonstrate a comprehension score of at least ninety percent. At this level, the kids read orally in a natural tone. 

Their silent reading will be faster than their oral reading. The teacher’s goal should be giving students at least thirty minutes of independent reading time in the first grade and kindergarten and at least forty minutes per day for second grade and up. The teacher can split that time into two periods.

Parents can use the following strategies to help their kids attain an independent reading level.

Starting with clues: Parents should try to identify if their kids are using sounding out techniques to recognize unknown words. Or if they’re using pictures to understand what’s written on the page.

Checking vocabulary: Parents can play games with their kids to understand what words they know. Playing synonym games is another effective method to see what words the kids know. While parents talk with their kids, they can describe something specific from the day. They should use interesting adjectives and sophisticated vocabulary when talking with the kids.

Asking comprehension questions: Understanding what kids read plays a crucial role in their reading journey. Parents can pause on every other page to discuss what they’ve just read to understand the kids’ reading comprehension. Parents should make this a normal reaction to the story like they’re thinking aloud about the characters or the story so that kids don’t feel it is like a test. Parents can also consider encouraging their kids to act out and retell a story.

Discovering kids’ favorite books: Parents should choose books that interest their kids, so they remain excited and curious about reading. Reading books together can promote children’s love of reading, and letting them read the same books to parents can improve their confidence over time.

Creating a reading corner: Establishing a reading corner in the house can benefit kids. It doesn’t need to be elaborate. It can be a simple, private area where the kids can confidently read independently or with parents. It’s also great for the area to be well-lit and filled with books the kids enjoy reading.

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