Speed to Read
Elizabeth DeHaye
Growing independence and fluency

Rationale:  Fluent Readers are more likely to enjoy reading.  To read fluently, children must be able to read quickly.  This lesson will help children practice reading quickly through multiple "rehearsal" readings of texts for a performance reading to a younger children.

Materials:  one copy of Stellaluna, by Janell Cannon, Harcourt Brace & Company. 1993; one timer for every two children; primary paper and pencils.

1.  Introduce lesson by telling students:  "In order to be good readers, we must be able to read quickly.  Reading slowly is not enjoyable for readers or listeners, and so we must practice.  When we practice and become quick readers, each of you will get to read our story to a kindergartner".
2.  Teacher will model reading passages of Stellaluna both quickly, and in a slow, dragging manner.  Teacher will also model and remind students about cross-checking:  "She landed in a bird's neck.  Mmm, that does not make sense.  I will do what we call cross-checking - go back and look closely at all of the letters in each word and read this sentence again.  She landed in a bird's nest.  Now that makes sense!"
3.  Teacher and students will practice reading passages of the story out loud together.
4.  Teacher will pair students off.  Teacher will model how to use the timer and record times.  One child will read the story while the other listens and times.  The students will record their reading times on a chart.
5.  Students will practice and time their reading with a buddy every day for several days, and will be given the opportunity to take the book home.
6.  At the end of the week, the children will visit a kindergarten classroom and will each read Stellaluna to a younger child.

Assessment:  The reading time chart will be used to assess the students' reading speed.

Reference:  Dr. Bruce Murray, Auburn University:  http:// www.auburn.edu/rdggenie

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