Accelerated Reader You've probably heard your child talking about the exciting things taking place in school, and most likely heard the words "Accelerated Reader" and "STAR" mentioned once or twice. But what do these words mean? STAR (Standardized Test for Assessment in Reading) is the perfect complement to Accelerated Reader. STAR is a computerized test that accurately assesses the reading levels of students, and measures growth throughout the school year. By taking the 10minute test it helps to quickly determine each student's zone of proximal development (ZPD). This defines the reading level range from which the student should be selecting books in order to achieve optimal growth in reading without frustration. The ZPD reading range is approximate. Accelerated Reader (AR) developed by Reading Renaissance, is a computer software program that helps teachers manage and monitor students' reading growth. A student simply picks a book at his or her level and reads it at his or her own pace. When finished, the student takes a short quiz on the computer. Accelerated Reader gives both student and teacher feedback based on the quiz results, that the teacher then uses to direct ongoing reading practice. Students using Accelerated Reader choose their own books to read, making reading an enjoyable experience. Your child's classroom teacher, help your child choose books that are challenging without being frustrating, ensuring that your child can pass the quiz and be successful. If a student does not do well on the quiz, he/she gets individual help from a teacher who might choose a book the child can read more successfully, have the child read with others, or even have the book read to the child. Children really enjoy taking the quizzes--in most cases, they can't wait! With their teacher's help, students set goals for themselves and work to achieve them. Most books in our library have AR quizzes at various levels. Books with a colored, dot sticker on the spine indicate it is an AR book with a quiz. The level of the book is on the inside cover. A student can take a quiz on any computer in the building since our computers are networked. *Books with quizzes in our library are posted on the web. This is to help families at home who want to know which books we have quizzes for in their child’s ZPD, although students are able to take the quizzes at school only. Every parent has concerns whenever his or her child tries something new. Your questions deserve straightforward answers. Q. What if my child doesn't like reading? A. Using Accelerated Reader, your child will choose the books he or she wants to read. The teacher will make certain the book is at the right level so that after completing the book, your child should do well on the AR quiz. Success on the quiz will encourage your child to read more. With guidance from the teacher, and success, children who say they don't like reading will develop a love of reading. Q. Will my child have to read a book I don't want him to read? A. No. There are many, many choices of books at your child's level. He will never be forced to read a book you find questionable. Q. My child already does well in school. Why does she need this? A. Even if a child is gifted at playing a musical instrument, she has to practice to develop her talent. Accelerated Reader encourages more and better reading practice. Bright children, like all children, need to be challenged. Teachers using AR in their classrooms find it easy to match each student to the books that give the child both challenge and success. Q. What can I do to help? A. You can do what you have always done--encourage your child! Teachers using AR make time for reading in school. You can help by making sure your child has time to read at home as well. Reading with your child, no matter what the child's age, is an important part of developing a good reader, creating a lifelong love of reading and learning, and creating a warm, loving relationship between you and your child. Make reading a family affair! Q. I'm concerned that my child will be unfairly compared to others. A. Then you will like Accelerated Reader. It is not competitive, but rather a tool to help the teacher work with each child individually. Students using this program are encouraged to progress at their own pace and set their own goals with the help of the teacher. The aim of Accelerated Reader is for every child to succeed in achieving his or her own goals. Note: S.T.A.R. and Accelerated Reader are only a piece of the reading instructional programs at our school. If you have any questions or concerns regarding S.T.A.R. or the Accelerated Reader programs, please do not hesitate to contact your child's teacher. Just like you, we want your child to be happy and successful! The Accelerated Reader tests available at Stanley can be located on the Tacoma Public Library Site at http://www.tpl.lib.wa.us/ After you are at the site, go to Kids and Teens, then to Accelerated Reading Lists. Be sure to specific Stanley Elementary because each school has its own list.