Anthony Gell School

Parent Guide to Accelerated Reader

Accelerated Reader is a software package. It is made up of the Star Reading tests and the Accelerated Reader quizzes.

It is used with Year 7 and Year 8 in order to:

  • monitor their reading habits; ensure that they are reading at a level that will develop their comprehension skills;
  • give incentives to read by awarding certificates and prizes when students achieve specific targets;
  • provide a basis for teacher intervention to guide and progress reading.

How do the students experience Accelerated Reader?

Year 7:

  • Each student will take a star reading test. This diagnoses their current reading age and provides them with a ZPD (two numbers). From this information a points target is set which is based on the student reading for 15 minutes a day. Students are introduced to the library and shown how to find books which fall within their ZPD.
  • Students are shown how to log on to Accelerated Reader, search for a book and take a quiz. When they take a quiz they will gain points based on their score and the difficulty of the book.
  • Each term, as well as their personal target, students will be set individual and class challenges. There will be prizes and certificates awarded in English and/or assembly.
  • Reading for Accelerated Reader will happen during English lessons and will be set regulary as homework.
  • Quizzes should be taken as soon as a book is finished. This can be done by using the Accelerated Reader link on the student intranet https://anthonygellco.sharepoint.com/sites/AGSPupilIntranet scroll down to see the link and    icon which looks like a square orange leaf. 
  • This process is repeated each term.

Year 8

  • Each term, as well as their personal target, students will be set individual and class challenges. There will be prizes and certificates awarded in English and/or assembly.
  • Reading for Accelerated Reader will happen during English lessons and will be set regulary as homework.
  • Quizzes should be taken as soon as a book is finished. This can be done by using the Accelerated Reader link on the student intranet https://anthonygellco.sharepoint.com/sites/AGSPupilIntranet scroll down to see the link and the square orange leaf icon which looks like a square orange leaf. 
  • This process is repeated each term.

Certificates used for Accelerated Reader:

1 – Ready Reader – passed a quiz with 85% or more

2 – Rising Reader – passed three quizzes within ZPD with 80% or more

3 - Super Reader – passed six quizzes within ZPD with 80% or more

4 – Star Reader – achieved points total for one term

5 – Independent Reader – read for 15 min (on average) every day over 1 term

6 – Advanced Reader – passed 3 quizzes with 85% or more for books of level 6.0 or higher

7 – Classic Reader - passed 3 quizzes with 85% or more for books of level 0 or higher

8– Word Millionaire – read over 1,000,000 words during a school year.

Accelerated Reader helps to give us a picture of each students’ reading practices. The quizzes are important because they show if a student has understood what they have read.

If a student is regularly scoring below 60% on the quizzes then it may be that they are either reading too quickly, or the book is too difficult for them at this stage. It would, in this case, be better if they chose a book in the lower range of their ZPD.

If a student is regularly scoring 100% then this suggests they should be trying more challenging books. They need to consider books in the higher end of their ZPD.

Further information to support reading

Students should take a quiz as soon after they finish a book as they can. Unfortunately, they cannot do this at home because of the license conditions for the software.

Books are available from the library, where students can select up to three books at a time. If students would like to read books from home then you can check the level of a book, and whether it falls within a child’s ZPD by using the following website: http://www.arbookfind.co.uk/

On this site you can search for book titles or authors. The book level is shown after the letters BL. On the student intranet there is a recommended book list.

https://anthonygellco.sharepoint.com/sites/KS3_English - you need to go to the student folder and then the Recommended Reads folder. The word document is a list produced by AGS staff and also shows book levels. The TES list is far more comprehensive and has some very challenging, and some adult books. It should be used carefully and with guidance even by ambitious readers.

If students wish to read books outside of their ZPD that is fine; they should not do a quiz on a book outside of their ZPD and they do need to have at least one book that is within the ZPD.

Parents are essential to encouraging reading. You can help your child by:

  • Giving opportunities to read (anything not just books)
  • Asking about what children read
  • Talking about what you read
  • Playing word games
  • Reading with/to them
  • Encouraging them to read to younger children

If you have any other questions about Accelerated Reader or reading in Y7 and Y8 please feel free to contact Rachel Spencer on rspencer@anthonygell.co.uk 

Easy Read version for Accelerated Reader guide

Please click here to view a PowerPoint with audio regarding reading at Anthony Gell School. If you need this in any other format please call the school.