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#70133 - 03/01/10 04:08 PM STAR Reading Levels - how accurate?
Trillium Offline

Registered: 06/29/09
Posts: 91
Anyone familiar with the STAR reading computerized test? DD9 just got the following scores and I'm wondering how (or if) they corrolate to other kinds of tests.

Grade Equivalent: 9.6
Percentile Rank: 99 (does this test even rank above the 99th?)
Instructional Reading Level: 9.3
Zone of Proximal Development: 4.7-9.6 (seems like such a wide range to me--and why would it top out at her GE?)

#70136 - 03/01/10 04:47 PM Re: STAR Reading Levels - how accurate? [Re: Dottie]
mnmom23 Offline

Registered: 09/11/09
Posts: 696
FWIW, last year my DD took the STAR test twice in one day because they thought the first test didn't "take." In a space of that one day my daughter's STAR test varied by 2 entire grade levels. I agree that for the test to be useful it is good to look at the general trend over the course of the year. And, like Dottie says, kids should read whatever they are comfortable with. That being said, if the STAR test results are limiting your DD's choices of books available for checkout from the library to books that aren't at the level at which she is comfortable reading, then I'd talk to the teacher and/or the librarian.
She thought she could, so she did.

#70151 - 03/01/10 07:29 PM Re: STAR Reading Levels - how accurate? [Re: gratified3]
elizabethmom Offline

Registered: 04/13/09
Posts: 146
Loc: East Coast
Sometimes the universe makes sense. I was upset about an AR issue, DH didn't get it, I check here and...voila.

DD6 skipped K and we have had a lukewarm reception. She has been taking AR tests, which I'm not crazy about since they read to take tests, not to read. She's been good though, she will read a book even if it isn't an AR one, and I encourage that. She took a test the other day, didn't do well and didn't get her point. She and I were confused about it and wanted to see the test, to see if we could learn something. Is she not reading carefully enough, did she really not understand the questions (always looking to learn about my child). Teacher said that we are just striving for perfection and need to let go, that life isn't always perfect - no connection to our actually wanting to learn something from these silly tests.

There's a chart in most AR schools, showing how many points children have completed, again, does this strive for actually learning at all?

#70162 - 03/02/10 01:20 AM Re: STAR Reading Levels - how accurate? [Re: elizabethmom]
Dandy Offline

Registered: 08/12/08
Posts: 574
Originally Posted By: elizabethmom
There's a chart in most AR schools, showing how many points children have completed, again, does this strive for actually learning at all?

One of my favorite fellers, Jim Trelease, author of the "Reading Aloud Handbook," discusses this in his book. Here's a link to his website with a portion of that chapter:
Being offended is a natural consequence of leaving the house. - Fran Lebowitz

#70174 - 03/02/10 05:10 AM Re: STAR Reading Levels - how accurate? [Re: gratified3]
cym Offline

Registered: 05/01/06
Posts: 865
Loc: southwest
I agree that AR is helpful at the developing reader stage (elementary school), setting goals which seems a strong motivator to read. I don't like when reading level limits what kids can read, but luckily some teachers just say read anything you want regardless of levels. Problems of the past included lack of books in the elementary school AR "library" for advanced readers, but this has been rectified. I also agree that AR should not constitute the entire reading program...Our teacher complements it with book studies (reading a book as a class, discussing it, worksheets) and magazines (like Weekly Reader, but I forget the titles) with question/answers afterward.

STAR testing (both in reading and math) is limited but our schools use it as well. Once kids score 12.9+ the schools will keep using the test over and over, which is crazy, eh? Seems like a waste of time at that point.

#70182 - 03/02/10 06:41 AM Re: STAR Reading Levels - how accurate? [Re: cym]
Floridama Offline

Registered: 04/27/09
Posts: 389
Loc: Florida
STAR uses vocabulary in conext to score a level. The passages get more detailed and the vocabulary gets more difficult as the test progresses. Here are a detailed STAR link, it has some sample pics

Grade Equivalent: 9.6
Your kid scored the same as an "average" 9th grader during the 6month of school

Percentile Rank: 99 (does this test even rank above the 99th?)
No scaled test will score above the 99th- Looking at my mountain of previous STARs. It seems that the 99th is earned around the 3.5grades up, benchmark.

Instructional Reading Level: 9.3
This is the level in which your DD scored atleast 85% proficient in understanding the vocabulary in context.

Zone of Proximal Development: 4.7-9.6 (seems like such a wide range to me--and why would it top out at her GE?)
I assume they do this do encourage kids to read a wide range of leveled books. Just because a kid reads at a 9th grade level does not mean that he/she can't increase her reading skills by reading lower level books.

#72462 - 03/25/10 10:12 AM Re: STAR Reading Levels - how accurate? [Re: Floridama]
Lan Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/09/10
Posts: 6
Loc: California
My son's school uses STAR math for math level test and Accelerated Math along with AR. His STAR math level turned out 12.9 in the beginning of 3rd grade. He was accelerated in math and knew long divisions by then. But he didn't know much about fractions, decimals and percents. So he wasn't even ready for pre-algebra.

According to someone in a different forum, 12.9 level means that he solves 3rd grade level math problems as if someone who's in 12.9 grade level. Hmm whatever that means... Did we give much credit to his STAR math 12.9 level? No. Were we happy about the number? Absolutely!

I know STAR math is different from STAR reading but thought it might provide a different insight.


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