Middle & Upper Primary Catch-Up Decodable Reading Books

Structured Synthetic Phonics (SSP) is reported to be the most effective way to teach reading. To support quality SSP instruction, it is essential to equip readers in the early stages of reading with decodable reading material. These texts facilitate rich opportunities for students to rehearse their decoding skills in a context that gradually increases in complexity and length. Regardless of age, decodable reading material will be required if students have not mastered the early stages of reading (PLD Stages 1 and 2), or if reading lacks fluency (see this article for how to calculate reading fluency). PLD has a range of high-quality decodable reading books for older students that align with the PLD phonic sequence. Click here for our full downloadable catalogue.

How to Assign Appropriate Decodable Books

Older students who are operating at a junior primary level or whose reading lacks fluency will need to be screened each term using the Middle & Upper Primary Early Reading Screen and/or fluency Words Correct Per Minute (WCPM) calculation. These screens will serve two purposes: 1) To check that reading progress is being made and 2) Identify the stage that targeted reading practice is required. The Middle & Upper Primary Early Reading Screen can be found in the Year 3, 4, 5, & 6 Screening and Tracking Manual and the fluency WCPM calculation method is detailed within this article. As you can see from the coloured lines and boxes on the right-hand side of the image below, the exercise at which the student begins to experience difficulty will denote their reading level. If targeting fluency, then provide decodable reading books from one level below.

In every middle and upper primary classroom, there will be students who require decodable material beyond Year 1. If students are experiencing difficulty at a PLD’s Stage 1 (and are not progressing at a pleasing rate) we recommend administering the screen for students experiencing difficulty acquiring Stage 1.  The screen highlights the skills that require targeted teaching and should direct the efforts of educators and other stakeholders when modifying their targeted small group or individual teaching programs.

Foundation – Year 1 Catch-Up Readers
Year 1 – 2 Catch-Up Readers
Year 2 – 3 Catch-Up Readers