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LLED 402: Teaching Children's Literature

Professor: Tanner

What are Reading levels?

Reading Levels in Eiche

To help you select a reading level appropriate book in our juvenile collection, you will see that the books are color coded. This coding is only internal to the Eiche library and it is meant to be a guideline. 

Selecting Books

Select a book that is not only reading level appropriate, but also interesting and facilitates projects and activities.

When selecting a book, think about:

  • How complex is the story
    • Does it need prior knowledge of events, facts, people or places? How intermingled are the stories of the characters?
  • Difficult words
    • Sometimes a lower lever reading book might have a few difficult words to pronounce, or the students might not know the meaning. It is important to read the book prior to using it in class.
  • Ratio of pictures/words
    • In general, the higher the reading level of a book, the fewer images it will have. Look at the images, are they representative of the text? Are they scary?
  • Reading level
    • There are many tools to help you select the best books, however every child will have a different level of reading even within a level.
    • To make sure books are at the right level, use the 5 dot rule.
      • Ask students to read a page of a book and make a dot every time they struggle with a word.
      • If the student reaches the end of a page with 5 dots, the book is probably too difficult.

Adapted from “Ten Steps for Reviewing Children’s Books” and “Selecting Books for Young Children