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Is Your Kid Ready For Hogwarts? A 'Harry Potter' Reading Level Guide

A must-read if you’re raising future Potterheads.

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Little boy with Harry Potter book — Harry Potter reading level
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Depending on your age (don’t worry; no one’s asking), you may have grown up reading J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter book series or watching the Harry Potter movies. They may have even been an integral part of your childhood. Or, perhaps, your first introduction to the wizarding world was as an adult, and you had the chance to experience the story in an entirely different context, catching all the symbolism. (Hey, maybe you’ve had every opportunity to read the books or watch the movies but just aren’t interested. That’s totally fine too.) Regardless of your journey to get here, you probably landed on this article because you’re wondering about Harry Potter reading level. In other words, is this something your kids can read themselves if they’re interested, or is it still up to you to give them their fix of spells?

Before we get into the specifics on the Harry Potter reading age, if your kids are into the fantasy series, we’ve got plenty here to keep them occupied, including Harry Potter jokes and Harry Potter crafts. You could also teach them all about Harry Potter’s family tree. But right now, let’s dive into what parents should know about Harry Potter reading level, broken down by age and grade.

What age is appropriate to read Harry Potter?

In short, it all depends. If you’re talking about when to start reading the books to your child, that’s up to you. You know what your kiddo can handle. As far as we know, there’s no version of Harry Potter for toddlers, and because the stories deal with some darker themes — including parental death — it may be best to wait a few years before introducing the books to preschoolers. Even if kids are a bit older and already in school, if they scare easily or have nightmares after watching or reading something they think is spooky, then you’re probably going to want to find a different bedtime story.

As far as the reading level of Harry Potter books, or the best age for kids to start reading them, again, it depends on the child. The reading levels and ages listed on the backs of books are approximate: There’s no definitive chart saying what a child should be capable of reading at certain ages.

Below, we’ll get into the recommended grades and ages for reading each of the Harry Potter books, but remember, it’s only a guideline.

In the meantime, in case it’s helpful, here’s the Harry Potter reading level lexile rank:

  • Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s/Philosopher’s Stone: 880L
  • Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets: 940L
  • Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban: 880L
  • Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire: 880L
  • Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix: 950L
  • Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince: 1030L
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: 980L

Harry Potter Reading Level, Broken Down by Age and Grade

Age 8 + / 2nd and 3rd grade

  • Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s/Philosopher’s Stone
  • Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
  • Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Age 10+/ 5th grade

  • Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
  • Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Age 11/ 6th Grade

  • Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Age 13/8th grade

  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

How else can I figure out my child’s Harry Potter reading level?

Another great way to determine whether your child is ready to start reading Harry Potter books is to ask a children’s librarian. They may not know about every single book in the library, but they definitely are familiar with all things Harry Potter. This means that they’ll be able to weigh in on not only how challenging of a read a particular book is but also the topics and themes that are addressed in each. That will help you, as a parent, make a more informed choice about whether or not it’s time for a trip to Hogwarts.

What is a Harry Potter vocabulary list?

Reading is a great way to strengthen your child’s literacy skills, especially when using a book they enjoy. So take things further with a Harry Potter-themed vocabulary list. While learning to spell these magical words, your little ones will build their reading efficiency, too. Here are several words you can add to their next spelling test!

  • Herbology: The study or collecting of herbs.
  • Galleon: This is the most valuable coin in the wizarding currency. It’s also called the gold galleon.
  • Muggle: A person who doesn’t have any magical powers and was not born into a magical family.
  • Poltergeist: An invisible and supernatural entity that causes disturbances in the world of the living by making sounds and moving objects.
  • Wand: A stick-like object witches and wizards use to express their magic. It’s usually carved from wood or a magical substance.
  • Phoenix: This is a mythical bird that rises from its own ashes. Dumbledore had a phoenix that would set itself on fire every few years and then magically reappear as a new bird.
  • Apparition: When a supernatural person or thing, usually a ghost, appears.
  • Luna: A moon goddess. The name of a popular character, Luna Lovegood.
  • Pansy: A violet.
  • Lucius: This word comes from Latin origin and means light. The name of Draco Malfoy’s father.

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