Teachers are often asked about running records and is my child achieving the correct levels for their year level. Here is some information to help parents understand the purpose of the reading level.

Running record levels help teachers to support students to become independent readers. The increments between levels are not equidistant. This means that the gradient of complexity of text Levels 1-26 are not incrementally equal. This therefore means that the majority of students typically move through the lower levels quite quickly, but take longer to move through the increasingly complex levels. The aim is for students to work broadly within levels having a strong and solid foundation – reading with proficient, efficient strategies and deep comprehension.

Quote from Fountas and Pinnell, 2005 Levelled Books K-8 pg. 128

“If the texts are well matched to the readers, we will be expecting effective processing in terms of comprehending, fluency, and word solving. Readers should be able to read with phrasing and fluency and should be able to discuss the texts after reading. It is by behaving like proficient readers (with parent support) at each level that readers get better. They use the gradient as a ladder of support. “

Texts other than levelled books

Although using levelled texts can support readers, it is important to have a rich variety of literature and good quality texts accessible within classrooms and the home environment so that students can be exposed to, enjoy, hear, view and read good quality literature, work with multiple text types (including digital texts) and understand that reading is not just about reading ‘the levels’.

Here is a guide to reading levels. (Please remember this is a guide and each student will achieve at different rates depending on their development as a learner. Just like learning to walk and talk.)

By the end of September – Reception students should be reading at level 5.

By end of September – Year 1 students should be reading at Level 13.

By the end of Year 2 students should be reading at Level 21 and above.

In Year 3 and 4 students generally achieve at 6 month increments.

We conduct regular running records with your children using both fiction and non-fiction texts. Please talk with us if you would like to learn more about running records