This past year, Juliet has taken off reading on her own. I'm not too concerned about grade level right now--as she just seeks out and finds library books that she finds interesting and reads them. I trust her to pick out ones that are not to easy--not too hard--the old "goldilock" books, if you will.
However, last year, and in the beginning of this one, I was befuddled as to how to determine grade level. I just couldn't figure out if they were too hard or too easy. She wasn't as confident in picking out books, yet, so we were always somewhat stumped at the library. (for her "read-on-her-own" books)
Just recently, I stumbled upon a great app to help me called "bookscanner". It's for the iPhone, but there is something similar for android as well.
Basically, you just scan the barcode on the book and a screen like this will pop up with all the information you need.
I think this one cost 99 cents, but it was worth it to me.
You've probably already heard of this, but it was new to me, so I thought I'd share!
By the way, 12 Kinds of Ice, (the book pictured above) is absolutely fantastic. We read it together twice before giving it back to the library. It's the perfect snowy, winter read.