I Can Do It!
Rationale: Reading fluency is the ability to recognize words accurately, rapidly, and automatically. Once it is achieved, the reader can better comprehend written text and recognize words automatically. Repeated readings allows for children to practice with a familiar text until they reach fluency. The goal of this lesson is to increase reading fluency and accuracy through repeated, timed readings.
Materials: "The Little Engine that Could" by Watty Piper: Grossett and Dunlap. (one for each student, and one for the teacher), markers, stopwatches, chart with a line graph on it to track reading rates that the teacher can create, sheets of blank paper
1. Introduce the lesson by saying that when we want to learn to do something, like riding a bike, we have to practice many times until we can do it well. Ask the students to name some things that they have had to do many times until they were able to do it well. Then, tell the students that today, we are going to practice reading faster and more smoothly. Which means, that we will have to do it many times to be better at it.
2. Place the children in groups of 2 students. "First, I want you to listen to me read and follow along in your books." Read the students the first page of the book and make sure that they are following along with their fingers. This will give them exposure to the story and what they are going to read. Afterwards, have the students read with their partners in their small groups.
3. Pass out stopwatches. Still working in pairs, one student will be the reader and the other will be the timer. The student will tell the other to begin reading and will time for on minute. While the student is reading, the other is marking down any errors that the other is making. The students will alternate reading the passage and see if they can get fewer and fewer errors each time. The teacher can make it like a game to see if they can do better and read more words each time with fewer errors.
4. Now the students will mark their improvements on the line graph with the markers that the teacher provides. That way the students can keep up with their own progress. They will be able to see their reading rate increase and their errors decrease.
5. For the assessment, the teacher will individually call the students up to her desk and she will time them and mark their errors and improvements for her records. Provide feedback so that the students can do even better next time.
Reference: Eldredge, J. Lloyd. Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classrooms. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, Inc., 1995. p.125.
Click here to return to Challenges