This year, we are introducing a new reading scheme for Years 2-6. Accelerated reader is a program which aims to improve pupils’ reading ability and help them to read books that are right for their age group. It ensures that every child has a reading book and time in the day to read them. At the start of the year, and at the end of each term, the children take a ‘STAR assessment’ which assesses their reading fluency and comprehension skills. They are then given a ‘zone of proximal development’ which gives them a range of levels in which they should be choosing books. The library, and eventually classrooms, will be organised based on book levels so children know where to get their books from. This test will also highlight areas that each child needs to work on in terms of reading comprehension, allowing teachers to arrange interventions and lessons accordingly. The star test will also produce specific targets for each child as well as a predicted attainment for the end of KS2.
Children can then choose books which are at their reading level, as well as age appropriate, and once they have read a book they take a quiz which tests their comprehension of the text. Children also collect ‘points’ based on how much they are reading and how long the books are. Another feature that this program has is the use of ‘MyOn’ which is a website that contains nearly a thousand eBooks that the children can choose to read. Many schools who have already implemented this system have commented on how much more engaged reluctant readers are and how much their pupils are taking responsibility for their own reading progress.