I get this question a lot, especially from parents. AR, short for Accelerated Reader, allows students to take tests on books they’ve read. Students should be testing on those books that are on their reading levels, nothing below or above. Those reading levels are individual to each student and represent those reading levels that will help students become better readers.
So, what can you do with AR at home? Since it’s impossible to take the tests on books at home, there are some very important things you can do at home to promote AR.
- Visit AR Bookfinder. This website allows you to look up books to determine the reading level and point value of that book. Since we have Accelerated Reader Enterprise, we have access to every test that has ever been made, so if AR Bookfinder lists it, it’s available to you. There is a Parent’s Guide to Bookfinder for more information.
- Make time for reading at home. Read together or independently, but either way, just read. If a student reads a book with someone, they can still test on that book. When they take the test, the student will indicate whether someone read it to them, with them, or if they read it independently. If they choose “read to” or “read with”, they will have another chance to test on that book once they are able to read it independently because the test will reset in 6 months.
- Set a goal. Most teachers set point-based goals with their students. At home, have a goal as well. It could be as simple as reading 30 minutes per day, or have your own point-based goal. Make a chart and allow the reader to mark their progress toward their goal. One word of caution — make the goal realistic and attainable. Goals can always be revised upward if necessary.
I hope these tips on how to incorporate AR into your home, and not just a school program, have helped. Feel free to share any of your own strategies in the comments. I love to see what’s working for you!