Hip Hip Hooray for Expression!!

Reagan Ellenburg
Growing Independence and Fluency


Rationale:  Fluency is being able to read and reread decodable words in connected text.  To be fluent you have to be able to read accurate and automatic.  To be a successful reader which means fluent, there are five components: reading faster, reading with expression, reading smoothly, reading silently and being able to read voluntarily.  This lesson is going to focus on being able to read with expression. 


Dry Erase Board

Dry Erase Markers

Sentences from the Teacher

Five Minutes’ Peace (1 copy for teacher)

Lee and the Team (1 copy for each student)

Assessment Checklist for each student


Sample Sentences:

What’s your favorite color?

Stop pinching me!

Can you pass me a crayon please?

I can’t wait to go on summer vacation!

Leave me alone!

Would you like to play baseball with me?


Sample Checklist:

Does the student change his or her voice to high or low?

Does the student change his or her voice to loud or soft?

Does the student change the inflection in his or her voice according to the end punctuation mark?

Is there a notable and distinct difference in the students voice when he or she reads with expression and when reading with out expression?

Did they accent important words?



1. The teacher will begin by sharing about expressive reading with the students.  To let people we are reading too know what is happening in a story we have to change our voice.  When we change our voice we either make it lower or higher to show our emotion.  I will also share why we read with expression.  First, I will tell the students to listen to two sentences.  When the children think they hear the one with expression, they will raise their hand.  I will then ask them if they think they would like listening to a story if it was read like the sentence without expression?  The class will then realize that expression makes a story interesting and enjoyable to listen too. 

2. Now I will read Five Minutes’ Peace.  I will tell the children that if you hear me using good expression and emotion I want you to say “Hip Hip Hooray!”, if you think I am reading with no expression and very plain then hold both thumbs down.  I will read a few sentences without expression (“I am going to the beach.”) then change and read with great expression (“I am going to the beach!”).  This will show the students what a big difference it makes when someone reads with expression.

3. Now I will write several sentences on the board.  I will ask for a student to read that sentence without expression then reread it with the expression that they think is needed to make the sentence make sense.  We will do the first one together.  Ex. I love the beach!  The teacher will read the first time with no emotion or expression then reread with great expression and exclamation. After the student re-reads the sentence with expression the rest of the class will say “Hip Hip Hooray!” This will also help the student reading to know the distinct difference.

4. Next the teacher will review with the class about punctuation marks and the feelings associated with them.  The teacher will explain how a person might change their voice in different ways to read a sentence with a question mark (“Will you please hand be that crayon?”) or an exclamation point (“Hand me that crayon!”).  There will be a class discussion and several examples given by both the students and the teacher.

5. Now we will be reading a book called Lee and the Team.  Book Talk: “This book is about a boy named Lee. He is on a baseball team.  On the day of his game, the team is going to be late.  The team is supposed to run to the game so they will be on time, but they do not want to. Will the team make it to the baseball game on time?  We will have to read to find out!”

6. The teacher will ask the students to take out their copies of Lee and the Team.  First the students will read silently.  I will then call on students to read out loud to practice using expression by having to look out for the punctuation. 


As the students are reading out loud I will have my checklist checking off how they read.  Once again when the student re-reads the sentence correctly the class will say “Hip Hip Hooray!”


http://www.auburn.edu/%7Emurraba/invent/parkergf.html YAY for Expression! By Lauren Parker

Murphy, Jill.  Five Minutes’ Peace.  Scholastic 1990.

Lee and the Team.  Educational Insights:  Carson, CA. 1990.

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