Does your school use AR points?
Posted 20 January 2008 - 03:34 PM
Next quarter they have to get 50!
Many of her classmates are reading several 5 point books that are just crap in my opinion, so they can get their points. DD is still required to read quality literature to get her points.
Just venting! I teach kindergarten and don't use AR. Dd is in 5th grade.
Posted 20 January 2008 - 03:54 PM
All that said, his teachers always worked with him on setting a reasonable goal. The goals were different for each student. Since my oldest liked to read NF, his teachers would set his point goal a little lower, but his level goal a little higher. Does that make sense? Now that he is in middle school, they are just required to read a certain number of books from certain genres, based on the state standards for their language arts class. I think last quarter he had to read a science fiction book, a biography, and another book of his choice.
My first grader has just started AR. He flunked his first test. While he can read and comprehend, he just didn't like the test. His teacher understood, and has now backed off the AR thing with him.
Now that I have given you much more information than you cared to have...
By the way, I am a public school teacher, too. I teach high school math.
Posted 20 January 2008 - 04:04 PM
It can be good, but like your child, dd only cares for a certain type of genre-fantasy books. She is reading Black Beauty and the Little House set (finally-after trying to get her to read it for years) for this quarter. I can tell she is miserable and would rather be reading something else, but these will get her the high points.
Anyway, I look forward to seeing you on these boards!
Posted 20 January 2008 - 04:31 PM
40 points is a lot for 5th grade and would definitely encourage kids to read down a level instead of challenging themselves. Does your teacher require students to read on grade level (i.e. only level 5 and up)? I have heard where some schools do that which bothers me because kids should be able to read for fun, and I know that not all of my reading is at a post-college level. Also as the tests are all multiple choice they are based completely on what happened rather than higher-level analysis.
A couple of suggestions. 1. Ask your teacher or library media specialist for a list of books they have tests for that are at a certain grade level on up. That way you can look for those books at the bookstore or public library because there are always books they have tests for but not the book. You may also decide that you want to read a book with your child and talk about what happens to cement the comprehension. Or have your child take notes about what happens in each chapter particularly if the book took a while to read. 2. If there is a book your child wants to read and there isn't a test available, as you teacher/librarian to make up a test. AR allows the option to enter tests for any book you want if there isn't a test available. They might balk at this suggestion but it is possible.
Let me know if you have other AR questions.
Posted 20 January 2008 - 05:45 PM
Another thing we did was allow parents to donate the money to buy the AR tests. If the school did not own the test, then the parent could donate the $5 to buy that test. When we had the minimum order number, we would order. (I was the PTA treasurer for a number of years and started this fund.)
I do like the idea of taking notes. My oldest is doing that with Fellowship of the Ring. I am, too.
Posted 20 January 2008 - 09:30 PM
I understand why AR can be attractive to schools, but without training and evaluation and re-evaluation, it can cause teachers and students to lose sight of the actual goal --- to get children reading good books.
Posted 21 January 2008 - 07:31 PM
Posted 22 January 2008 - 12:41 AM
He read books very much below his grade level to get the quick points -- despite the fact that his reading was scoring at college level. All efforts to get his teachers to insist on above-grade level books were futile -- they couldn't be bothered. The fact that I told *him* to read above-level books as a waste of time, too, since he didn't have access to the library that contained them.
I have nothing good to say about AR.
This year, he's read The Iliad, The Odyssey, and he's just starting on Greek drama. He's also reading four or five news magazines per month and he actually will go to the bookcase and pull something out for pleasure reading. This is after over two years of homeschooling where he's been exposed to more than first, second or third grade books.
I don't place *all* the blame on the school. He didn't do what he was told, either, and it became a mess. But AR reading was the catalyst.
And by the way -- I think 40 or 50 points per quarter is *way* too much.
Posted 22 January 2008 - 09:55 PM
It is so good to hear other opinions on AR!
Posted 24 January 2008 - 06:14 PM
Posted 24 January 2008 - 07:16 PM
Posted 24 January 2008 - 07:37 PM
My kids aren't in school and I'm a bit ignorant about all the different things that go on there.
Posted 30 January 2008 - 07:11 PM
Posted 05 February 2008 - 07:11 AM
That being said, I fully understand others' frustration. Offering fun incentives is one thing. Locking an advanced reader into a system that doesn't work for them -- especially if they clearly don't need the motivation -- is just ridiculous.
"No child left behind" is not enough. There should also be "No child's potential squashed by the system."
Posted 04 March 2008 - 12:13 AM
What I really wanted to point out in this post is the fact that, new for us this year, my kids can take AR tests on books I read aloud to them . I love, love, love this! I've always read aloud to them and to have them getting "credit" for it is icing on the cake. So, if you don't already know if it's allowed in your school, I'd advise you to check and see if your dc can do this as well.