Leveled Readers

Levels readers show a readability level. Numerous publishing companies now provide leveled readers. Sometimes the books are called guided readers.

Leveled reader books will show the reading level. Emergent, early, fluent, and fluent plus are examples of levels used. Sometimes letters A through Z are used. Also, grade levels are used and sometimes with year and months.

What is so wonderful about some of the leveled readers is the pictures.

Even if you use the higher-end levels, most of the leveled readers have wonderful pictures. That makes them great for using with children who are using them to learn English as a second language.

They are also good for developing language skills for children at a young age. The pictures are  right here. For example, one book is titled, Places in My Community. You can go through the book and talk about the different places, such as the places to live, places to work, places to shop, places to learn, places to play, and places to do things together.

Many leveled readers are expository texts, or informational text, exposition. And if you refer to discourse structures, you will note the differences between expositions and narratives.

Leveled readers are also published as narratives, or stories.

Here are examples of informational texts  The Senses, Food from Plants, Where People Live, Time and Routine, Food, Weather and Seasons, Transportation, Families, Plants, Places on Earth, and Color and Size.

These leveled readers support social studies, which includes history and geography. They also support math. For example the leveled reader titled, Color and Sizecan be used for teaching math concepts.

Leveled readers can be used for teaching science. Making Pancakes. Think again about exposition and the different top-level structures or different thinking paradigms. We have problem and solution, compare and contrast, cause and effect, and also sequence or time order. With the Making Pancakes, there is going to be a sequence, what you do first, next, and so on.

In the Story of Ice Cream, the history will follow a time order, as well as a how to or cause and effect.

There are leveled readers on places. Children can about different places and countries around the world.

The readability levels will reflect the different levels of language: phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, and pragmatics. You will see these levels of language included in the texts of leveled readers.

Higher leveled readers generally have more text on a page than lower-leveled readers that are easier to read. Sometimes you can use a higher level with a child reading at a lower level by going through the book and reading just the captions or the headings, or talking about the pictures, all of which develops comprehension and language skills.

Leveled readers are good texts to use with children. Many libraries have some sort of a leveling system available. Some use the Accelerated Readersystem and place the color-coded levels on a wall or chart to refer to. The color code used on the books refers to the level or difficulty of the books as determined by the system that the company Accelerated Reader uses.

Leveled readers are also available online for purchase. Generally, these are softbound. Some of these have audio recordings that go with them. Some libraries also provide the softbound and audio recordings for the child to listen to as he follows along in the text.

So here are a few key points. Look for interest level. Find books on topics that interest the child. What does the child like learning about, talking about.

Also, notice the layout. Is the book appealing? Is it attractive so that you want to pick it up and look through the pictures?

Look at the density of text. Are there too many words on a page. Consider the interest and ability level of the child. Is there sufficient white space on the page that the child is drawn to reading the words.

Look at the size of the font. Too little may not invite the child to read.

The illustrations and pictures are important. The pictures make the books inviting to read.

Look at the sentence difficulty.

When you use leveled readers, consider the models of reading. What does the child already know about the topic? The background knowledge.

If the child knows a lot, the child can tell you. After reading the text, ask the child what he learned? What does he now know that he didn’t know before. You can also ask what he would like to learn or doesn’t understand before starting to read the text.

Then talk about what the child liked about what he read. What does he think he will remember about what he read?

Remember to match the interest level of the child with the book, but also consider the language and reading ability of the child.

These are important points to consider regarding leveled readers and reading with a child.