1, 2, 3, Read!

Mallory Durham

   Reading Fluency-Speed

Rationale:  In order for children to really enjoy reading, and to better understand what they are reading, they need to read fluently.  Learning to blend is important in fluency. Repeated readings are an excellent way for children to become fluent in their reading.

Materials:  A copy of Clifford the Big Red Dog for each student and teacher; a kitchen timer for each pair of students; a sheet of paper with a dog bones on it (The sheet should also have a list of numbers going up along the bones starting with the smallest number on the bottom); crayons


  1. It is important to learn fluency because it helps you read smoothly and understand what you're reading.  Today we are working on how to become a more fluent reader.  When we learn to blend and decode we will be able to read unfamiliar words. This will help improve our fluency!
  2. Explain decoding first.  Use an example word to model how to decode.  If I use the word 'bat', I would start out by finding my vowel first which is /a/.  Then I would blend the letters B and A together to make /ba/.  Lastly I will attach the /t/ at the end of the first two sounds to make 'bat'.
  3. Explain blending.  I'm going to say a word and I want you to tell me which way is better to say it.  Is c-a-b or cab better?  Cab, right!  That's an example of blending a word.
  4. Now I want everyone to have all their eyes on me.  I'm going to read you the first two pages in our book today.  I want you to listen carefully to how I read smoothly and with expression.  The teacher will read to model fluency.  One fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish.  Black fish, blue fish, old fish, new fish.  Teacher may read over this at least three times to give the students an idea of what they want to sound like.  Teacher should read clearly and smoothly.   
  5. Okay everyone, it's time to practice our fluency! I'm going to partner you into pairs.  Each student will have a copy of Clifford the Big Red Dog.  I want one partner to be partner A and the other to be partner B.  I want you to take turns reading to each other.  Partner A may read the even pages while partner B reads the odd pages.  Partner A will begin.  Ready, Go!!  Teacher will walk around and take notes of each child's reading.  If the partners are done before the teacher gets to listen to them, they should reread.      
  6. Now we're going to play a little game.  I'm going to pass out a kitchen timer to each pair of students.  I want you partner take turns reading for 1 minute each.  When the timer goes off on the kitchen timer, stop reading.  I want you to count how many words you read and graph that on your sheet of paper with dog bones.  You may practice this three times, but only for 1 minute per turn.  Use the red crayon for your first turn.  Use the green crayon for the second turn.  Use the blue crayon for the third turn.  If you get done with your 1 minute reads early, you may keep reading the book to each other for more practice. 
  7. The teacher will take up the graphed sheets.  The teacher will then calculate each child's words per minute from that sheet. 


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