Following the recent school closures, Renaissance is committed to supporting teachers and parents to help keep Ireland reading. We’ve provided step-by-step guides on how to access Accelerated Reader and myON from home, and ensure every child can continue their reading journey.
Quizzing from home guidance for schools and parents
We don’t usually encourage quizzing at home as it can affect test fidelity and result in data being distorted. There is also a risk of students returning to school with obscure reading ages or misleading ZPD ranges due to improper quiz practice. However, due to these exceptional circumstances, you may wish to consider allowing students to quiz at home for a limited period.
Ensure that all books issed to students are :
- AR quizzed – you can use the Accelerated Reader Bookfinder website to search for a book and see if a quiz is available.
- Appropriate for the student’s level of ability – more information can be found here.
- Schools may need to change the setting in Accelerated Reader to allow quizzing before/after normal school hours and off their wi-fi – learn more here
- Once schools reopen, access to quizzing from home can and should be reversed. Please refer to the same instructions.
We advise students complete quizzes unaided. If parents/carers wish to support their child, they can do so in the following ways:
- Discuss the book with your child as the book is being read
- Ask your child to read the question aloud
- Re-word questions for your child, if necessary
- Ask your child which answers are not correct
Schools may wish to set up a short cut to their Renaissance Place account on their school website, but should only do this if your students have unique usernames and passwords. You can also easily create a mini-URL if that is more memorable – speak to your ICT department for support with this.
- Daily reading is a crucial factor in developing every student’s reading age – more information here.
- For schools with myON, this page outlines how students and parents can make the most of myON from home.
- There are also lots of great resources to use at home at www.takethequiz.co.uk.
What is Accelerated Reader?
A student reads a book, takes an online quiz, and gets immediate feedback. Accelerated Reader guides your children to read books that are at the right level for them, challenging their literacy skills and helping them to improve their reading. With over 38,000 quizzes to choose from, “Children enjoy reading more”, according to an independent study from the National Literacy Trust.
What is myON?
Many children do not have access to enough reading materials, especially at home. myON, the enhanced digital library, provides every child with unlimited access to digital books available 24/7, offline and online. Audio narration, writing tools and built-in dictionary for spelling & grammar are included to improve student’s digital competence and literacy skills. Children can choose from up to 5,600 books available in school, or at home!
What are Star Assessments?
Star Assessments for reading and maths are computer-adaptive tests with instant progress monitoring and intervention reporting. What’s more, these reports provide you with accurate, reliable data perfect for preparation of your Whole School Evaluation (WSE) with the Education and Training Inspectorate (ETI) or during progress meetings within your school.
Personalised reading practice proven to improve attainment and encourage a love of reading
Our presence in Ireland
Hear from our customer schools
“I would recommend the Accelerated Reader programme very highly to other schools, the results are fantastic! The students and teachers are engaged with it, and the evidence that it provides is very valuable.”
– Martina Flynn, JCSP Librarian, St. Aidan’s Community School
St. Aidan’s Community School in Dublin, Star Reading and Accelerated Reader was brought in to encourage reading for pleasure and to monitor student progress. They’ve seen great progress, especially with boy reluctant readers. Watch their story below.
“We’ve seen two major changes in literacy since implementing Accelerated Reader: the development of a reading culture, and improved comprehension of books across the school. “
– Gearóid Roughan, Principal
Scoil Chríost Rí is one of over 60 schools in County Clare using Accelerated Reader but was one of the first in Ireland to implement the programme, in 2011. Principal Gearóid Roughan describes the school’s reading approach and experiences with the programme. Read the full story here.
National Educational Psychological Service (NEPS) Good Practice Guide’s recommendation of Accelerated Reader
The NEPS guide, 2019 edition, was developed by educational psychologists, using their expertise to inform teachers and special education teachers within mainstream schools in Ireland. The guide aims to help teachers by sharing information about evidence-based approaches to teaching reading to struggling readers, covering students aged between 6 – 18 years.
Accelerated Reader (AR) is highlighted as an “effective reading intervention”, citing the following research:
- Gorard et al (2015) (on behalf of the Education Endowment Foundation) conducted a study involving 349 experimental participants in 10 schools. The results indicated “a clear benefit in favour of the intervention group” in the area of reading comprehension, with children from disadvantaged communities responding best to the intervention.
- Topping (2016) conducted a large scale study reviewing data for 852,000 students. He found that the more rigorously AR was implemented, the more significant the gains were for the participating students, especially for struggling readers, EAL (English as an Additional Language), and students from socially disadvantaged backgrounds.
- Clark and Cunningham (2006) compared almost 10,000 children who used AR with 22,000 children who didn’t use the programme, aged between 8 and 18 years old. They found that children who used AR were “significantly more likely to enjoy reading, to read frequently outside of the classroom and to think positively about reading.”
- Byrne and Parkinson (2018) found that Irish 3rd class children who engaged in AR showed “significant gains in reading self-concept” after a 9-week intervention.
- Kilkenny project (2018), 13 primary aged students who used Accelerated Reader made 8 months of progress in word reading and 12.5 months of progress in reading comprehension after just 3 months of intervention.
In summary, the evidence provided in the NEPS Good Practice Guide, strongly indicates that Accelerated Reader can improve reading progression, reading comprehension and the enjoyment of reading within students, especially in struggling readers and the intervention group.
Select the options below to read the NEPS Good Practice Guide (AR pages 69,70) or to discover additional independent research for all Renaissance solutions.
Get Ready for the New Language Curriculum within National Schools
The new Primary Language Curriculum enters schools across Ireland, with greater emphasis on practice and on supporting progression in children’s language learning and development. The school contexts for this curriculum include English-medium schools, Gaeltacht schools, Irish-medium schools and special schools. The aim of the new curriculum is to improve children’s language learning and development, in environments where children can learn at their own pace.
How can the Renaissance ‘complete literacy solution’ support the New Curriculum?
- Tracking learning progressions with Star Reading. A key element of the new curriculum is to enable children to build on prior knowledge and experience of language learning. With a Star Reading test teachers can screen an entire class In just 20 minutes, and instantly identify each students core skills. Teachers can run the ‘instructional planning report’ which provides next-steps for learning based on these core skills and monitor progression throughout the year.
- Personalised reading with Accelerated Reader. The new curriculum emphasises the need to improve literacy levels whilst providing personalised learning where students can learn at their own pace. With Accelerated Reader, students are encouraged to read within their ZPD (Zone of Proximal Development), to remove the frustration of reading books too challenging or too easy. Whatsmore, with over 38,000 titles to choose, in fiction and non-fiction, kids are sure to find books they’ll love.
- Engaging and interactive reading with myON. Oral language, reading and writing, are elements described as ‘essential’ for language learning within the curriculum. myON – the new enhanced digital library – provides thousands of books, with audio narration, writing tools and built-in dictionary for spelling & grammar. These embedded supports mean students can practice all three essential elements in a fun, engaging platform. Whatsmore, students have unlimited access to all books 24/7, online and offline, meaning they can read at school or at home. Teachers can monitor each students reading data and use myON for whole-class reading.
To discover more on how our complete literacy solution can support schools in Ireland, click the link and fill out the form below.
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Book a free online demonstration of Accelerated Reader or Star Assessments
Please use the form below to arrange an online demonstration with a member of our team.
Depending on your choice, you will be introduced to the key features of Accelerated Reader or Star Assessments, and have the opportunity to discuss any questions you may have about the product. The demo will last approximately 30 minutes.
More information on assessment and practice solutions from Renaissance
Please use the form below to request more information, a personalised online demonstration or a quotation on any Renaissance product from a member of our team.