Age appropriate reading materials

Children and young people with reading difficulties need to be offered choices of books and stories rather than constantly being 'provided' with texts.  Encouraging them to read relevant and interesting material may enable them to discover what reading can offer them as individuals and improve their motivation and self esteem.

Some general criteria for choosing books:

  • They should be interesting to the reader and appropriate to their ability
  • They need to be written in simple font with wide line spacing (possibly printed on tinted paper)
  • Fiction should have straightforward plot development (avoiding flashbacks, time shifts and confusing changes in point of view)
  • They have simple sentence structures and short paragraphs to enhance the sense of progress

The following list provides information about reading schemes that have been successfully used by Cumbrian schools but there are many others available.

Age appropriate Reading Schemes
Barrington-StokeReading age 7 years upwards
Key Stage 2 - 4U2READ OK
Key Stage 3 - 4U2READ
Rising Stars DocksideLow reading age - high interest level
Appropriate for Upper KS2 and KS3
Project X (OUP)Key Stage 2/3 - targets boys in particular with a range of adventure stories and non-fiction
Phonic BooksBegins with Dandelion Launchers (Reading age 3-5 years) and continues in stages to the Talisman series (Reading age 8-14)
Penguin ReadersBegins with Reading Age of approx. 7 years.
Upper KS2 and KS3 graded sets beginning with Easy starts (200 words)
Oxford Trackers (OUP)KS 2 interest level/KS1 Reading age adventure stories
Nelson Thorne Fast LaneAimed at 7 - 11+ years with high interest/low reading age fiction & nonfiction sets
Pearson Rapid ReaderPrimary interest