That's a Record!

                                                                                             Growing Independence and Fluency

                                                                                                                    By: Lauren Elliott

Rationale: Recognizing words automatically as sight words is one of the goals of fluency. Reading becomes more meaningful and enjoyable when words are recognized automatically. In addition to automatic word recognition, students must be able to read quickly, smoothly, and expressively in order to become fluent in their reading.  These characteristics are acquired over time through the method of repeated readings.  In this lesson students will gain fluency through repeated readings and one-minute reads.

Materials: multiple copies of Miss Nelson is Missing!; hourglass timers (1 per each group of two students); pencils; paper; Fluency checklists


1. I will introduce the lesson by explaining that I will be reading a book to the class. I will have them keep an eye on the clock as I read so that we do not run out of time. I will begin to model reading without fluency. ãThe title of the book is M-m-m,i-i-iss oh, miss· N-n-n-ne-e-lson, etc.ä When the problem is addressed (that I am taking too long to read a sentence), I will discuss the characteristics of a fluent reader (fluent readers use expression, read words smoothly, accurately and quickly, but not too quickly to the point where we can not understand what is happening in the story.) I will model reading the text too fast, then as a fluent reader.

 2. Hand out a copy of Miss Nelson is Missing to every student. Practice reading the first page together.  ãNow letâs listen to someone who is reading fluently!ä

3. Listen to tape or Îrecordâ of ãMiss Nelson is Missingä as a whole class.

 4. Explain activity. ãToday we are going to practice reading like the woman that we just heard on the tape. Since this book has a lot of words that we may not know too well, we are going to pair off and practice reading with a partner.  We will each get a chance to read the book to our partner 4 times and we  are going to time ourselves each time we read to see how fluent our reading is becoming as we practice!ä Each time you finish reading, your partner will count how many words you read in one minute and will then write down your time on a one of the four records that I will hand out to you.

5.Pair students off homogenously and pass out appropriate materials to each group.

 6. Introduce time charts. ãIf you open up your books you will notice that I have made a little music note after every tenth word. While you time your partner as they read, pay attention to what mark they stop on when the time is up so that you can add up the words.ä

 7. Students will read as I walk around listening and assisting.

 8. Students will turn in their time charts with their recordings.

Assessment: I will walk around the room and listen as the students are reading. I will use a fluency checklist as an assessment tool for every student in the class, and I will ask reading comprehension questions to assess the students who are reading silently.  The checklist will tell me which students are reading aloud, whispering, reading with only their lips, or silently reading. I will ask silent readersâ comprehension questions such as, ãWhat did the children think gobbled up Miss Nelson? or Why was Miss Nelson upset with her class?ä to make sure that they area actually reading and not just sitting there.

 References: (Whitney Adams-Speed Reader).
 Miss Nelson is Missing! By: Harry Allard and James Marshall, published by Houghton Miffiln. 1977.

Reading Genie Website: Dr. Bruce Murray

 Click here to return to Constructions