A Speeding Rocket, a Shooting Star·.. It's a Racing Reader!!!
Aretha Holloway
Gaining Fluency

     Reading success is not just knowing how to read.  It involves being able to comprehend what you are reading by reading words in connected text automatically and effortlessly.  Children develop better comprehension skills when they become fluent readers (the ability to recognize words accurately, rapidly, and automatically).  Once children have learned basic decoding skills, they can learn to read more fluently by reading and rereading text.  This lesson is designed to show students how to increase their speed through timed readings to become fluent readers.

Stop watch for every two students; Pencils for each student; Flash cards with the following words:  bike, grin, mice, slime, bite, dip, slim, spine, like, sip, mine, slip; Di and Mice by Cushman and Kornblum (Educational Insights) for the teacher*; A Kite Day at Pine Lake by Cushman and Kornblum (Educational Insights) for every two students*; **a die cut race car with Velcro on the back for each student; a path board with numbers in intervals of 10 marked on it to represent the number of words each student reads per minute for every two students ( put Velcro for the students to stick their car on); paper for each of the students to write their score on to keep in a classroom folder title "One-Minute Read:  Striving to Become a Racing  Reader!" (Make sure the papers are dated and has the correct child's name on it and is placed in the correct folder); Write this sentence on the board or a poster board (whichever is convenient but make sure it's larger enough for the kids to see:  Mike will break the glass if he drops it on the rocks; classroom library
*do a booktalk before reading
**any path board can be made and used with a matching marker (rabbit trying to get a carrot, monkey climbing a tree, etc)

1.  "Today we are going to talk about the correct and the incorrect ways we should read a book.  First, we are going to review i_e = /I/ because it is used several times in the book that we are going to read today.  What did we say about words whose ending has a vowel, then a consonant, and an e on the end?   That's right. It makes the long vowel sound. "  Hold up words on the flash cards so that every one can see them.  "The cards that I have have words on them.  When I hold them up, I want you to tell me what it says."  Go through the cards at least four times until they read them all correctly. "Great job!"

2.  "Now I am going to read a book to you and I am going to read it twice.  The first time I am going to read it incorrectly.  The title of it is Kite Day at Pine Lake by Cushman and Kornblum.  It is about a group of friends who go the park to fly kites.  The kites are all sorts of pretty colors.  Bob shows up and he is sad.  Let's read the book and find out why Bob is sad and what the friends decide to do about it."

3.  Read a few pages to the children.  Read it choppy, slow and without expression.  When you finish reading the pages, ask the kids questions such as what was this book about?  Who can tell me why Bob was sad?  What did the kids do about his sadness?  A majority, if not all, of the kids will not be able to answer the questions.  Don't tell the answers.  "It is very hard to understand the text if you read it slow and spend a lot of time decoding or sounding out each word."

4.  "Now I am going to reread the book.  This time I will read it with speed and expression."  Reread the book correctly.  "Now who can tell me why Bob was sad?  That's right.  Because he did not have a kite.  What did his friends do to make him happy?  Right again.  They made him a kite to fly.  Were you able to understand the text better the last time than you did the first time? " Wonderful!  Does everyone see the difference between reading correctly and incorrectly?"

5.  Explain to the kids that they can become fluent readers by reading and rereading text.  "Everyone can become fluent by reading and rereading text.  For example, I am going to read this sentence on the board several times until I can read it fast and read all the words correctly."  Read the sentence several time making your decoding skills better and better.  Start out reading the sentence decoding many words and read it slow.  Read until you can read the sentence with speed and expression.  "Does everyone see how the more I read the sentence the better my reading got?  That's what I mean by reading and rereading."

6.  Have a few volunteers read the sentence but first review cross checking with them.  "Now I want some volunteers to read the sentence but before starting to read, I would like for us to review what we do when we get stuck on a word.  First, we take a shot by covering up part of the word to make it easier to sound out.  If this does not work, we read to the end of the sentence to see what would make sense.  If you are still having trouble you would change your guess to fit the sentence.  Can someone tell me what we do after we know the correct word?  Read the sentence again.  Right!  Always reread the sentence again to get back into the meaning of the story.

7.  "Now I want everyone to find a partner and I am going to pass out a book to read, a stopwatch, and a path board for each group and each person will get a race car. I want each of you to number your paper from one to four because that is how may timed readings we are going to do.  The title is Di and Mice and it is about a little girl who likes to ride her bike.  One day while riding her bike, she stops to eat and sees something white hiding in the vines behind her.  What do you think it is?  Each of you is going to read the book several times.  While one person is reading, your partner will be timing you to see how many words you read in one minute.  When you finish and have counted your words you will put your car on that number on the path board and write that number on you paper beside whatever timing you did.  For example, if it was your first timing, and you read 25 words, you are to put 25 out beside number one and your car on the 25 marker on path board.  If it is your second timing and you read 26 words, you put 26 beside number two and your car on 26th marker.  I want each one of you to take turns reading and rereading the book and documenting your scores. When you and your partner have done it four times, I want you to make sure you have written your name, date, and the title of the book that you are reading at the top and place it in your Reading folder."  You may have to write this information on the board so that they will remember.  "When you finish, I want you to get a book and read it silently until everyone else finishes.  If you finish reading your book silently, reread it.  As you read it, try to pick up the speed and put more and more expression in your reading to help you gain fluency."  Give every child time to read the book at least twice.

"Now we are going to play a game.  Everyone get with his or her partner and I am going to time you while you read your book.  While you are reading, your partner is going to count the number of words you read and write it down on paper.  Remember to not skip words and practice cover up and rereading to understand a word.  Now let's read."  Start stopwatch.  "Very good girls and boys.  Now we are going to switch places."
(Do the one-minute timing two times). Go over the scores with the kids and give them verbal praise for their good work.  "Everyone did a wonderful job.  Is there anyone who would like to give a book talk so that the rest of the class can see if they would like to choose that book the next time."

To further assess the kids, I will walk around while they are reading to make sure they are reading the words correctly.

www.auburn.edu/rdggenie/elucid/crenshawgf.html    Cindy Crenshaw, Flying Through the World of Books
www.auburn.edu/rdggenie/inroads/byrdgf.html   Lauren Byrd, Reaching to Read
Reading Genie Web site:  www.auburn.edu/rdggenie/fluency.html
www.auburn.edu/rdggenie/chall/herringgf.html   Michelle Herring, Get Ready, Get Set . . . Read!
Cushman, S. & R. Kornblum.  (1990).  Kite Day at Pine Lake.  California:  Educational Insights.
Cushman, S. & R. Kornblum.  (1990).  Di and Mice. California:  Educational Insights.

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