Understanding Lexile Numbers

A Lexile number is a number assigned to a text/book/periodical to indicate the reading demand of the text in terms of vocabulary difficulty and sentence complexity.

Lexile numbers range from 99 Lexiles and below/”BR” (Beginning Reader) to the 1700s (college level).

It is very useful to know your child/students’ Lexile reading number because it will help match them with the right book at the right level.

If your child has been assigned a Lexile number by his/her school, this number is your child’s instructional reading level, meaning he or she should be able to read these books with about 75% comprehension. Your child’s independent reading level is about 100-250 Lexiles below his or her Lexile number.

For independent reading for your child, choose a book level that is enjoyable–not at an instructional level. This will help build fluency, confidence, and a love or reading. For example, if your child is in second grade and has been given a reading Lexile number of 500, choose a book at a Lexile level of around 300. Use common sense too!

All 50 states use Lexile numbers. Most school and local libraries will also have book’s Lexile number. To find books at the right Lexile level, you can look at “Find a Book” at www.Lexile.com. This official website has a plethora of information, but there are no reading tests at the website. (Did you know you can even look up Lexile numbers at Barnes and Noble?!)

If you don’t know your child’s reading level, check with his or her school. If you are homeschooling, you can go to the San Diego Quick under this website’s Reading Navbar; administer the simple test. It will give you a rough idea of your child’s reading level, but it does not test comprehension.

Target Lexile Ranges:

Grade 1:  200-400

Grade 2:  300-600

Grade 3:  500-800

Grade 4:  600-900

Grade 5:  700-1000

Grade 6:  800-1050

Grade 7:  850-1100

Grade 8:  900-1150

Grade 9:  1000-1200

Grade 10: 1025-1250

Grade 11: 1050-1300

Grade 12: 1075-1350