Accelerated Reader

What is Accelerated Reader (AR™)?

Accelerated Reader (AR) is a computer program that helps teachers manage and monitor children’s independent reading practice. Your child picks a book at his own level and reads it at his own pace. When finished, your child takes a short quiz on the computer. Children using AR choose their own books to read, rather than having one assigned to them. This makes reading a much more enjoyable experience as they can choose books that are
interesting to them.

Teachers and librarians help your child choose books at an appropriate reading level that are challenging without being frustrating, ensuring that your child can pass the quiz and experience success. Since your child is reading books at his reading and interest levels, he is likely to be successful. This is satisfying for most children. Best of all, children learn and grow at their own pace.

What is a book level?
Book levels are reported using the ATOS™ readability formula and represent the difficulty of the text. For example, a book level of 4.5 means that the text could likely be read by a student whose reading skills are at the level of a typical fourth grader during the fifth month of school.
What is a Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD)?
In independent literature-based reading, ZPD is the range of books that will challenge a child without causing frustration or loss of motivation. Your child will receive a ZPD range after taking a STAR Reading test or teachers can use their best professional judgment to determine a ZPD. It’s important for children to read with a high degree of comprehension and within his/her ZPD. ZPDs should be adjusted based on the needs of your child.
What are points?
Every book that has an AR Reading Practice Quiz is given a point value. AR points are computed based on the difficulty of the book (ATOS readability level) and the length of the book (number of words). For example, the Berenstain Bears books, which are about 8,000 words long and have an average reading level of 3.5, are 1-point books. Hank the Cowdog, which is about 23,000 words long and has an average reading level of 4.5, is a 3-point book. The Sun Also Rises, about 70,000 words long and at a reading level of 4.4, is a 10-point book.
How will I know how my child is doing?
A TOPS Report prints automatically after a child takes a quiz to give feedback on your child’s understanding of the book and shows cumulative data for the marking period and school year. The TOPS Report is sent home with your child.


Visit to help your child find appropriate books!

AR Parent Guide

Book Finder Parent Guide

Home Connect Guide