Reading: Choosing a Book with the Five Finger Rule

THE FIVE  FINGER RULE: A SIMPLE METHOD FOR CHOOSING THE RIGHT BOOK FOR YOUR CHILD’S INDEPENDENT READING ABILITY [this method is most appropriate for end of 1st grade up]

Reading_Tips

The easiest way to determine if a book is at an appropriate independent reading level for your child is to use the “five finger” rule.

*Have your child begin reading out loud.   If they are a younger child, you want them to read no less than five-ten sentences and no more than a page if it is an older student.

*Raise one finger each time he/she struggles with a word for longer than 2-3 seconds.

*If they reach the end of the prescribed reading range before raising all five fingers, the book is written at a comfortable level for independent reading.

*If it is determined the book is not at an independent reading level for the child, DO NOT DENY THEM.  Make it a read aloud book that someone reads with them instead!

TIPS FOR CHOOSING A GOOD BOOK!

*SIMPLY PUT, a good book is one a child enjoys reading.

*Keep your child’s interests and reading level in mind.

*Encourage them to select books on their own as soon as they show preferences.

*Let them pick two kinds of books if they consistently choose books that are not at their independent reading level---one to read with you and one to read on their own.

*Talk with your child, their input will help you guide them to good books.

*Let them look through a book and decide if this is a book they want to read in its entirety.  If they don’t like a book after reading a chapter or a few pages, pick another one.  READING IS SUPPOSED TO BE FUN, NOT A CHORE.

Resources:

Reading is Fundamental—www.rif.org

American Library Association—www.ala.org

The Read Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease, 5th edition, 2001

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