Ready, Set, Read!!!

Independence and Fluency
Leah Steiner


Rationale:   In order for a child to read fluently he or she should be able to read faster and smoother than when they first started to read.  When a child is able to decode words automatically and effortlessly reading becomes a much more enjoyable experience for them.  The way to accomplish this is for the child to read and reread decodable words in a connected text.  The more children work with a particular piece of text, the more fluent the text becomes to them.  This lesson will help children learn how to read faster and more smoothly.

 Materials: Sentence strips with different sentences written on them (My dad and I ran home for dinner because we were late), (I hit a home run at the baseball game and I was so excited!). There will be one sentence strip for every group of two students. A variety of books for each group of two students to practice reading faster. Each student will have a record chart. (They will be able to choose a track with a runner, a football field with a runner (the yard lines being the number of words), or a tree with bananas and a monkey. Pencils. 


1. Let's begin by talking about how important it is for readers to read both quickly and smoothly.  Not only does it sound better when we read this way, but it also helps us to make more sense of what we are reading.  This means that the stories are more interesting and fun to read.  Let me show you.  I am going to read a sentence one time through just like a beginning reader would and then I am going to read it again like a really good reader would read it.  Listen closely to the difference.  "M-y-ddd-a-d-a-nd-I-rrr-an-ho-m-f-o-rr-d-d-I-n-e-r-be-cause-weee-w-w-e-r-l-l-la-te." That didn't sound quite right did it?  Now let me read it again.  Notice my speed this time. "My dad and I ran home for dinner because we were late."  That sounds much better doesn't it?  What are some things that I did differently in the second sentence than in the first sentence?
2. Now I want you to get into groups of two.  I am going to give you each a sentence to work with (My dad and I ran home for dinner because we were late).   I want you to read the sentence through for the first time out loud to each other.  Listen to the way that it sounds the first time that you read it. Then I want you to read the sentence silently to yourself at least five times through. Reading the sentence repeatedly will help you with your speed.  Then I want you to read the sentence again out loud to your partner.  Notice how different it sounds this time.  What makes it sound better?  Did it sound better when you read it fast or slow?  Great job!!!
3. Now let's try this with a real book!  I am going to give each group a book to read.  While one of you reads the book the other one is going to be the timer.  You will be timed for one minute.  Read as many words as you can.  If you come to a word that you do not know, use the cover up method to try to figure it out.  If you still cannot figure it out look at the rest of the sentence.  If that doesn't work, ask your partner for help.  I will also be walking around to help you.  We are going to do this several times so that you can become a faster reader!
4. After one minute is up you will count how many words you read and place your runner on that number on the track.  Then you will switch and your partner will do the same thing.  Before you start all over, make sure you move your runner or monkey to the correct spot on your chart and write the number of words you read beside it. (If you read more words move the object further, and if you read fewer words move the object back. “I bet after a couple of times reading the book, your runner will get farther and farther on the track.  Let's see· Ready, Set, Read!”

 Assessment:  I will assess the students by looking at their progress chart.  They will mark on the track where they began and where they ended and turn it in for me to evaluate.

Eldredge, J. Lloyd. Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classrooms. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, Inc., 1995. pp. 122-145. (Discoveries, On your mark, get set, read!)