E-mail: Carrie Sluder




To become successful readers, children must learn to read fluently. Characteristics of this factor are the ability to read fast smooth and with expression. In order to become fluent readers children must practice reading, re-reading then reading some more. Mastering the ability to become fluent readers will increase their comprehension which is ultimately the goal of reading.



*       Chalkboard

*       Chalk

*       The Tortoise and the Hare (from

*       Teachers fluency checklist

*       Student fluency checklist:



*      Fluent reading means being able to read quickly, smoothly and with expression. Can someone tell me what each of these mean? Great explanations. (Review what each term means so that every student understands each concept. An example of reading fluently would be reading a passage about someone who is frightened. You would want to read quickly and smoothly enough that your audience understands what you are reading while at the same time you want to be expressive and show that the characters are frightened.

*      Write the sentence The hare won the race! on the board. Read the sentence very slowly to the children. Chop up some of the words so it is hard to understand. T he hhhaaaarrre www on thhhh e rrrraaaa ceeee! Ask the class if this sounded like fun to listen to. Read the sentence again, this time fluently and with expression. Take a vote by a show of hands to allow students to pick which they think sounded better.

*      Write the sentence What a dull heavy creature! said the hare. Read it once using expression and fluency. Then read it together as a class as you guide them through the words. Divide the class into pairs. Have each student read the sentence to their partner at least three times a piece. Tell them each time you read to your partner you should become more fluent. Remember that means it should be a little bit quicker, a little smoother, and full of the expression just as if you were the hare.

*      Read them the tortoise and the hare. Include a book talk to gather interest. You could start off by reinforcing the need to be fluent readers and how quick is good but tell them in this story being slow is better for some things. Read the passage out loud while having them follow along with their own copy. Dramatize the key elements of fluency while reading the passage. Have them pay close attention to your expression while you are reading. By telling them I would like you to pay close attention to my fluency and how I am reading quickly, smoothly, and with expression because in a minute you are going to have to read this story for a partner.

*      Divide them into partners usually by reading homogeneous reading levels and have them read the passage to each other three times per person. While they are listening to their partner read have them fill out a fluency check sheetHHace theHa on that person.

*      Have them select a text that is on their level (They should already know how to select appropriate books) and ask them to practice that book at least three times a piece, each time they should try to increase their fluency skills.

*      Call on each child to bring their book to your desk. Have them pick a selection to read for you to check their speed, smoothness, and expression. You can use the rubric that has been provided.





The Tortoise and the Hare from Antelope Publishing.

Quick as a Mouse.