Thomas Marks Elementary

Lexile Reading Information for Parents

The following is a letter from Miss House that helps to explain the Lexile reading score that your child receives after being tested.

Please visit the lexile website ( for great information and ideas for books to get your child at their lexile level on the "Search for Books" link.

Dear Parents:

In past years we have administered the Degrees of Reading Power (DRP) Tests to students in our district. This year all students in grades 1-9 will be taking the Scholastic Reading Inventory (SRI) in order to determine their Lexile level. This test is taken on a computer, and changes to fit the reader as the test goes along. The test assesses how well a student is able to understand the meaning of what he/she is reading. We use the results of this test to identify students who need extra help in reading, to determine which textbooks and printed materials are most suitable for use in class, to monitor annual growth our students make as readers, and most importantly to help our students set reading goals.


“What grade level is my child’s Lexile score?”

Lexile measures do not translate to grade levels. Within any classroom, there will be a range of readers and a range of materials to be read. For example, in a second grade classroom, there will be some readers that are far ahead of the rest, and some readers far below the rest. To say that some books are “just right” for second graders assumes that all second graders are reading at the same level. Lexiles track a student’s reading progress over time, no matter what grade they are in

The District Goals for:

- first graders is that they be reading at a lexile score of 300 or higher by the end of first grade.

- second graders is that they be reading at a lexile score of 600 or higher by the end of second grade.

- third graders is that they be reading at a lexile score of 800 or higher by the end of third grade.

- fourth graders is that they be reading at a lexile score of 1000 or higher by the end of fourth grade.

- fifth graders is that they be reading at a lexile score of 1200 or higher by the end of fifth grade.


Helping Your Child Become a Better Reader

You can help your child by knowing his or her Lexile range. A reader’s recommended Lexile range is 50L above and 100L below their Lexile measure. These are the boundaries between the easiest kind of reading material for your child and the hardest level at which he or she can read successfully.  Once you have your child’s Lexile score you can connect him or her to tens of thousands of books and tens of millions of articles that have Lexile measures. Most public libraries have access to online periodicals databases where you can search for newspaper and magazine articles by Lexile measure.

For books, the Lexile Book Database ( can be used to both find books and create booklists. This free database allows you to search for books by keyword, title, author, Lexile range and other criteria. You can search for specific titles based on your child’s Lexile measure, and use keywords of interest to your child, knowing that the selections will be appropriate to your child’s reading ability.

You Can Help at Home By:

• Ensure that your child gets plenty of reading practice, concentrating on material within his or her Lexile range. Ask your child’s teacher or school librarian to print a list of books in your child’s range, or search the Lexile Book Database.

• Communicate with your child’s teacher and school librarian about his or her reading needs and accomplishments.

•  Communicate with your child about his/her lexile score, and how he/she is making an effort to continue to have that score climb.


            You have received a copy of his or her SRI test result for the first ten weeks of 2007-2008 as well as how he or she performed on the last test given in 2006 - 2007. A student is expected to grow approximately 50 lexile units each year.  A student's score should not decrease from one year to the next unless the student did not read carefully when reading the questions.  A decrease in the Lexile does not mean that a student needs remedial reading; it means he/she needs to read carefully when completing a task or needs to read more outside of school.  Motivation is also very important.  If a student is very interested in a book or a topic, he/she will often stick with a book that would ordinarily be too difficult to complete.  Good work habits are as important as good reading skills when taking a test, which measures your reading ability.  Commissioner Mills has said that all children should read 25 books each year, and write 1000 words each month.  Students who read at home become better readers.  We believe that with parent and teacher assistance, and encouragement all students can become successful readers.  Studies show that children are better readers when they read outside of school If you have a child who does not like to read, please encourage him or her to listen to books on tape, listen to others read aloud, or to read to younger children.

If you have questions about the SRI, Lexiles or about our reading program, please feel free to contact your child's teacher or call me at the following number: 751-9341 ext 153.

Thank you for your assistance in helping your child become a successful reader.


Catherine A. House

ELA Coordinator