By KRN Admin | Categories All | Curriculum | Early Education | Educators | K-5 Literacy | Reading | Results | October 14, 2020

If you have a young reader in your house, you may have heard different terms like Lexile, Developmental Reading Assessment, Accelerated Reader, and others. These terms and more are used to determine the reading levels of books.


But what exactly do they mean? How do we know that if a child can read a book on one level they can also independently tackle another level? The different reading levels can quickly become overwhelming, but don’t worry! We’ve got you covered.


Generally, teachers will perform several reading assessments with students over the course of the school year. These assessments determine their reading level which will help guide their choices when selecting books.


Typically, these reading levels are also used to categorize books in school libraries; therefore, the child can easily select books for themselves from that particular section. It’s important to understand that these assessments aren’t meant to restrict your child, but to determine the best way to help them progress as a reader.


Always encourage your child to read books on their level and to try more advanced titles. Stretching their comprehension skills will help them progress through the different levels.


There are a number of different ways that books are assessed. Here are some of the most popular methods and their explanations.

Common Reading Level Assessments

Accelerated Reader (AR) ATOS Level: AR is a computer program that helps teachers manage a student’s independent reading practice. The child picks a book read at their own pace. When finished reading, the student takes a comprehension quiz on the computer and receives points and feedback based on the quiz results.


Children select their own books to read instead of having one assigned to them, which gives them a sense of control and makes reading a more enjoyable experience.


F&P Text Level Gradient: Fountas and Pinnell Reading Levels are not solely based on the child’s skill levels. Instead, books are classified according to various factors such as word count, number of different words, high-frequency words, sentence length and complexity, word repetitions, illustration support, etc.


While students tend to have a wide range of reading comprehension skills at a young age, each reading level is associated with the school grade level in which the child belongs.


For example, kindergarten students read books on the A, B, C, or D levels; first-grade students read on E-J levels, and so on.


Developmental Reading Assessment (DRA): With DRA, each student’s reading level is based on an evaluation of three components: reading engagement, oral reading fluency, and comprehension.


The assessment is a combination of oral retelling, written comprehension responses, and overall student engagement. Once complete, teachers use the DRA Continuum to assess each student and select learning activities according to their skill set.


The Lexile Framework: The Lexile Framework is a popular system used to measure a student’s reading ability and level books on text complexity. When measuring both of these components, educators can “forecast” the success the reader will have with that book.


Even across the different level assessments, it’s important to note these indicators are meant to help your child – not restrict them. If you have any questions about how your child’s reading levels can be improved or wish to learn more about our program, reach out to us at


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By KRN Admin | Categories All | Book Deserts | Choices | K-5 Literacy | Reading | Results | Summer Reading | October 2, 2020

At a time when most of our communications are reliant on and provided by technology, we like to give Kids Read Now kids something different to look forward to – mail.

Technology can provide us with a sense of instant gratification, so have we forgotten that the anticipation can be fun as well? Sometimes jokingly referred to as “snail mail”, receiving mail is one of the greatest surprises, especially for kids. Since all our books are delivered via the United States Postal Service, we like to think we add an element of surprise to kids’ lives, especially when they know a brand new book is on the way!

5 Reasons a KRN Book Delivery is the Best Snail Mail

1. It’s personal. Kids love knowing something is coming just for them. As a personal and authentic touch, all KRN books are addressed with the student’s name which makes kids feel important and encourages ownership at a young age.

2. They wait for it. Especially now, with a limited amount of outside entertainment, our students wait with tremendous anticipation to receive their next set of books.

3. It’s a learning experience. Kids select the books they’d like to receive and have so much fun getting them in the mail, they may not realize they are learning and enhancing critical and creative thinking skills.

4. They can travel anywhere. These books let them sail the oceans, hike across the country, discover new friendships, and open their imaginations. KRN books are the perfect way to travel to another place, even if you have to stay where you are!

5. It’s safe and convenient. There’s no need for parents to schedule specific time to visit a bookstore or library. All KRN book deliveries are contact-less and delivered by the postal service, so you never have to leave your home!

For more information on our programs, contact us today.

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By KRN Admin | Categories All | Choices | Engagement - Family | K-5 Literacy | Reading | Summer Reading | September 28, 2020

It has certainly been a rollercoaster of a summer and Kids Read Now students across the country are returning to school, either in classrooms or remotely. If there is one thing we know for sure about our students, it’s that they pick some pretty amazing books to read over the summer!

Here are the most requested titles of 2020:

  1. National Geographic Kids: Jump, Pup! By: Susan B. Neuman

Do you like dogs? Then, I bet you love puppies! What do they do all day? Tag along on an adventure to meet new friends and see amazing sites. 24pgs

AR: 0.5 | Lexile: 130L | F&P: E





  1. My Friend is Sad By: Mo Willems Illustrated by Mo Willems

Gerald is sad. Piggie tries to cheer him up.

Will it work? A sweet read about two friends who stick together. Gerlad the Elephant is down in the dumps and his best friend Piggie is determined to cheer him up.


AR: 0.7 | Lexile: 220L | F&P: –




  1. Super Narwhal and Jelly Jolt By: Ben Clanton

Illustrated by Ben Clanton

Narwhal and Jelly unleash their inner superheros in this new book! They learn to use their inner powers and discover the joy of friendship in three new stories. Join them in their adventures!


AR: 2.6 | Lexile: GN510L | F&P: N




  1. The Bravest Dog Ever: The True Story of Balto By: Natalie Standiford

Illustrated by Donald Cook

The children of Nome, Alaska are very sick and need medicine. Balto goes to the rescue with a sled dog team to save the children on this grand adventure!


AR: 2.5 | Lexile: 510L | F&P: L




  1. National Geographic Kids: Tigers By: Laura Marsh

What is the biggest cat in the world? A tiger, indeed! These giant jungle cats are beautiful, strong, and powerful predators. Learn more about this endangered species.


AR: 3.3 | Lexile: 550L | F&P: K




  1. Big Shark, Little Shark By: Anna Membrino Illustrated by Tim Budgen

A great lesson about apologizing and including others in this funny, light-hearted story. 32pgs

AR: 0.9 | Lexile: 150L | F&P: F





  1. One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish By: Dr. Seuss

Illustrated by Dr. Seuss

A Dr. Seuss classic! Follow your beginning reader on all the funny, rhyme-worthy adventures! “From near to far, from here to there, funny things are everywhere.” You will love Dr. Seuss’s funny creatures and clever rhymes. 72pgs

AR: 1.7 | Lexile: 270L | F&P: L




  1. National Geographic Kids: Storms By: Miriam Busch Goin

Storms are scary, but it’s fun to learn what’s going on when Mother Nature strikes! Learn the facts about tornadoes, lightning, thunder, monsoons, hurricanes, and more!


AR: 2.7 | Lexile: 500L | F&P: –




  1. Pete the Cat’s Train Trip By: James Dean

Illustrated by James Dean

Pete the Cat takes an adventure on a train and gets to see the engine and honk the horn!

Take his groovy trip with him!


AR: 1.7 | Lexile: AD460L | F&P: –




  1. National Geographic Kids: Swing, Sloth! By: Susan B. Neuman

Come meet the all the creatures that make their home in the rainforest! Simple and lively text make this an easy read for those just beginning with books.


AR: – | Lexile: 100L | F&P: –

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By Leib Lurie | Categories All | Challenges | Critical Thinking | Curriculum | Early Education | Educators | Engagement - Classroom | Engagement - Family | K-5 Literacy | Learning Loss | Listening | Opportunity Gap | Parents | Reading | Reading Instruction | Results | Social Emotional Learning | Summer Reading | September 4, 2020

Every book we mail home has a book-specific “Discovery Sheet” on the inside front cover.

PARENT TIP: For books you get from other places, you can help build reading skills by making up questions or activities like these and talk about EVERY BOOK when your child finishes reading it.

It has room for your child to write in his/her name as the proud owner of the book. Pride in book ownership is a crucial first step on the path to loving reading.

Each sticker has four activities that will help your child better understand the book and improves their reading comprehension. These are written at the reading level of the book, so kids can read them easily. Some questions suggest working on an activity and/or discussing with a parent. Questions in Read-To-Me books are designed to be done with a parent. Most can be answered by talking about them or drawing a picture. Upper-level books have fun or challenging activities that match what is being taught in class to become a stronger reader.

Typically, each sheet includes the following four categories which work together to help a child better understand the book. To think how it fits into what they have read elsewhere, already know about themselves, compare with other books or shows, and use their imagination or creativity. For example:

Text to Self:

Text-to-self connections are highly personal connections that a student makes between parts of this book and their own experiences or life. For example, “What are some of the ways these animals take care of their babies, and how is this like how your mom takes care of you?

Text to Text:

Sometimes students are reminded of other things that they have read; other books by the same author, stories from a similar genre, or perhaps on the same topic. For example, “Pick two animals in this book. How do they take care of their babies? How are they the same? Or, different?

Text to World:

Text-to-world connections are the larger connections that a student brings to this book. We learn about things through school, teachers, parents, television and videos. For example, “What would happen to most of these animals if their parents did not take care of them?” or “Have you seen a program on television that talked about animal babies? How was it the same or different from this book?” Keep asking your child to talk more about it. The more they talk about what they have seen, the more they will learn and internalize it.

Creativity / Imagination:

This activity might ask your child to do something creative, such as draw a picture, draft a letter to the author, or imagine what might happen in a sequel to this book.

Always encourage longer explanations:

Brainstorm with them! Look up new facts, make up a play, or perform a puppet show about the story.

Ask your child to use new words they may have learned in this book.

Talking more about books helps make children better readers!


The Kids Read Now app (iOS | Android) helps foreign language-speaking parents better help their children. The Discovery Sheet activities can be viewed in over 150 languages.

Click here for a sample Discovery Sheet

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By KRN Admin | Categories All | Engagement - Family | K-5 Literacy | Listening | Parents | Reading | Results | Social Emotional Learning | July 6, 2020

Bedtime routines are especially important for children. Regular schedules and rituals give our children the predictability they crave. When kids know what to expect, especially when it includes a bonding routine like reading, it can help eliminate nighttime distractions.

Most doctors and sleep specialists will tell you to incorporate soothing, relaxing activities at bedtime. Some examples might include soft music, a warm bath, and our personal favorite, a bedtime story!

Here at Kids Read Now, we are big fans of reading — especially bedtime stories. Spending 15 minutes each night reading to or with your child can give you both a sense of connection and help establish a healthy routine.

Importance of reading before bedtime

There are no hard and fast rules for bedtime, just a few guidelines that will help establish healthy habits with your child. Reading before bedtime not only sets a calm atmosphere, but it also helps their busy minds calm down.

Additional benefits of reading before bedtime include:

Healthy bedtime rituals can help your child fall asleep faster, stay asleep, and wake up feeling rested and refreshed. As your child grows older, an established reading habit at bedtime will be second nature. Establishing good habits will not only take away the stress out of putting a child to bed, but it’s also a great way to spend quality time together.

Every night before bed, have your child pick out a book, and read along with him or her for 15 minutes. Chapter books can help reinforce your nightly routine as your child will look forward to each new chapter before bed! Don’t be surprised if your child wants to read the same book over and over, either. Rereading books helps your child have a deeper understanding of the material and presents an opportunity for stability.

At Kids Read Now, we remain focused on keeping kids interested in reading and expanding their imaginations. We have book programs that keep children reading all year long! If you would like more information, please reach out to us to learn more. Let’s work together to eliminate the summer slide, close the achievement gap, and create beneficial bedtime routines for all students!

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By KRN Admin | Categories All | Challenges | Choices | Critical Thinking | Curriculum | Early Education | Educators | Engagement - Family | K-5 Literacy | Learning Loss | Opportunity Gap | Parents | Reading | Reading Instruction | Results | Summer Reading | July 1, 2020

Summer Reading Slide : Summer Reading Program for K-3

The Summer Slide: Summer is a time for relaxation, sunshine, vacations, and… reading loss?

It’s estimated that a child loses two months of learning each summer, which accumulates each year, totaling almost two years of learning loss by the time they graduate high school.

This epidemic of the summer slide widely impacts all children, but more specifically those in disadvantaged and low-income families. Kids Read Now has made it our mission to combat the summer slide through a proven, in-home summer reading program.

Summer Reading Slide : Summer Reading Program


More about the importance of summer reading

Summer reading isn’t just about diverting their eyes from a screen to a book; it’s about keeping children’s minds ready to retain critical information. Even more so, studies show that summer reading bridges the achievement gap between the economic status of advantaged and disadvantaged children.

When schools close for the summer, reading opportunities diminish, especially for economically disadvantaged students without access to books. Some students live in book deserts, and without the oasis of an accessible home library will fall victim to the summer slide and widen the achievement gap.

This gap has a cumulative effect as students develop and progress academically and can account for significant increases in high school dropout rates and decreases in four-year college attendance.

From kindergarten to third grade, children learn to read. From fourth grade forward, children read to learn. Children who aren’t reading at grade level by the fourth grade are at increased risk to endure social and financial hardships throughout their lives, such as higher dropout rates, poverty rates, and incarceration rates.

Reading encompasses a myriad of subjects: math, science, social skills, etc. When a child reads, they exercise imagination and creativity, and they learn essential social and life skills to help them as they grow.

What is KRN doing about The Summer Slide?

Kids Read Now isn’t an average reading program. The difference? Kids are in charge.

Studies have shown that reading programs are most effective when children have access to self-selected books. Children are more likely to read voluntarily when they are in charge of choosing the book and subject matter. It’s more exciting and provides the child with an element of control.

How the program works

Designed for K-3 students, the KRN summer program allows students to select books from a large and diverse library of educator-approved titles. These books are delivered directly to the students’ homes, and they get to keep them forever!

Each book delivery comes with questions to aid students in comprehension and help parents engage with their child’s reading. Students who report reading every book on their list receive a completion certificate, a reward, and a celebration in Fall.

Kids Read Now sends weekly reminder calls, texts, or emails to the parents encouraging them to engage and connect with their child about the book they are currently reading.

A new study on the program, led by Geoffrey D. Borman, Ph.D., at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, found that, “Results indicate that the impact of KRN can more than eradicate the entire two months of summer learning loss experienced by low-income students.”

In short, the KRN summer reading program is eliminating the summer reading slide for students across the country.

Summer reading is vital to the success of our children’s education. If you are interested in learning more about the program, please reach out to us. Let’s work together to bridge the achievement gap for all students and families!

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By KRN Admin | Categories All | Engagement - Family | Parents | Reading | June 19, 2020

Let children create their own personal reading nook to foster a life-long love of reading

There is nothing better than seeing children’s imaginations come to life while they are reading!

The benefits of reading at a young age are endless. For example, reading enhances vocabulary, reduces stress, empowers empathy, and develops creativity and imagination.

By letting your children create their own special reading nook, you are empowering them to foster a love of reading. With a reading nook, you and your children can create a spot specifically for reading, where their imaginations can flow, and they can enjoy their own space and quiet time.

The reading nook can be as simple or intricate as they choose, but there are a few essential qualities to consider when creating the perfect space.

Quiet and Well-Lit


A Reflection of Them

By creating a cozy little spot that is all their own, you have given your kids the perfect opportunity to fall in love with books. They will be lost in their imaginations and reading cover to cover in no time!

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By KRN Admin | Categories All | Challenges | Choices | Engagement - Family | Games | K-5 Literacy | Learning Loss | Parents | Reading | Summer Reading | June 12, 2020

A vacation and a good book – name a more iconic duo! Books can go anywhere you go and can take you to more places than you could imagine!

Reading is essential to us here at Kids Read Now. Reading awakens children’s minds, sparks creativity, and provides an escape to another world, full of imagination!

As you begin packing for your next vacation, encourage your kids to pick out a few books to take with them. Empower them by giving them the option of choosing which books to take along. Choice goes a long way to creating an independent and encouraged reader!

In fact, many studies show when children self-select titles, they are more likely to read, comprehend, and enjoy the book.

Tips for reading on vacation with your child

Books can go anywhere you go: road trips, camping adventures, beach lazy days, mountain getaways, or even a staycation in your backyard. They never need batteries or a charger, and they are a great way to reduce stress, relax, and keep your mind active.

During our summer program, every book includes a Discovery Sheet on the inside of the front cover that encourages children to relate the book to other books, to themselves, and to the world around them. Families can easily replicate the same process on their own and join in on the fun with their books.

Here are a few tips for encouraging reading on vacation:

Vacations are a temporary escape from reality; a time to relax and let your mind wander – just like books. They should be enjoyed and revisited whenever possible. As you prepare for your next adventure, remember to add a few good books to your list, too.

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By Christina Brownlee | Categories All | Challenges | Choices | Curriculum | Early Education | Educators | Engagement - Community | Engagement - Family | Equity | K-5 Literacy | Learning Loss | News | Opportunity Gap | Reading | Reading Instruction | Results | March 23, 2020

by: Aliah Williamson, WDTN NEWS

Link to the original post

TROY, Ohio (WDTN) – Every summer since 2012, the Kids Read Now organization sends books to 130 different school districts to combat “summer slide” or learning loss.

This year, as the coronavirus shut down could potentially keep kids out of school for at least 5 months, there are tens of thousands of students facing new challenges.

Leib Lurie, the founder of Kids Read Now based in Troy, says economically disadvantaged students are more vulnerable when it comes to learning loss especially during the shutdown.

“Just over half of poor households have no highspeed internet connection and only 30 [to] 40 percent only have a phone,” said Lurie. “We have a lot of parents struggling just to keep their kids fed…”

In response, the nonprofit is ramping up its program early for “Spring Fling.” Schools can enroll in the program and help their students pick a wishlist of books for the summer.

The books each come with Discovery Sheets to help students with reading comprehension. When a student is finished with a book, they text a code to a number and the next book in the queue is sent.

Lurie says more than 10,000 students are already signed up.

“We’re going to ship probably close to 600,000 books in the next eight or ten-weeks. Typically nine books reduce the summer reading slide by 27 days or 2 1/2 months of school days. Six hundred thousand books are going to get a lot of kids doing a whole lot of reading,” said Lurie.

Sending books on such a large scale does come at a cost, but it’s a price that Lurie is prepared to pay to see students succeed.

“Our mission is to improve literacy outcomes for children. So if we have to put another $1 million of cost into this to keep it going we’re going to do that,” said Lurie.

Kids Read Now is looking for volunteers as well as donations to keep their program afloat.

For more information on how you could help out click here.

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