Wednesday, 17 August 2011

finding books for your children

Finding age-appropriate books at the right reading level for your children is not easy.

Now that we are doing home-school this has become an even bigger issue for us.

Here is a website that has made a huge difference:

This site has a huge catalogue of books. You can enter the lexile range, age appropriateness and many other search options. It then gives you all the books that fit those search criteria. Absolutely brilliant! If you work out roughly what the reading age of your child is then this page will give you all the appropriate books.

It has many other features, such as...
  • If you go to a book that won an award and click on that award, you can see all other winners. e.g. Newberry (USA), Carnegie (UK) etc. We've found lots of great books this way.
  • If you register (free) you can enter text and get a lexile ranking for that text.
  • It predicts expected comprehension of a particular book based on your lexile ability.

To obtain a "lexile rank" for your child, you can do an "oral reading fluency" test here and then download conversion tables here to get a lexile rank. It's only set up for years 1, 2 & 3. A bit fiddly but worth it.

For a rough guide, here are lexile ranks for some books you may know:

The Bike Lesson (Stan and Jan Berenstain) "60"
Amelia Bedelia (Peggy Parish) "140"
Frog and Toad are Friends (Arnold Lobel) "400"
George's Marvellous Medicine (Roald Dahl) "640"
James and the Giant Peach (Roald Dahl) "870"
I am David (Anne Holm) "910"

With this resource, together with the growing number of online cheap booksellers (e.g. Book Depository and Better World Books) we have been able to keep up the supply of suitable, readable and absorbing books to our girls.

3 comments:

Lucy C said...

This Christian site is useful too:
http://www.teenlitreviewblog.com/
and here are some other bookmarks:
http://www.kidsreads.com/
I have a list of kids boos gathered over the years. Too big to post here. If youtell me your email I'll sned it to you.

Lucy C said...

Just found Glen's addy. Will send it to tpg. Let me know if you don't get it.

Rachael said...

Thanks Lucy!