Speeding Into Fluency
Growing Independence and Fluency Design
Rationale: To become a good reader, students need to master the skill of fluency. Fluency helps with comprehension skills. To be fluent, this means you are able to automatically read words. Re-reading books also help with fluency because it helps them read with expression. This lesson is designed to teach students how to become a more fluent reader. Students will become more fluent through repeated reading and timed readings.
Pencils, Individual copies of the book Sammy the Seal, 1 stopwatch for every two students, Speed reading record sheet (1 per student), Partner check sheet (1 per student), and Comprehension Checklist
Name: __________________________________ Date: ___________________
Partner's Name: ____________________________________
After 1st Read: _______
After 2nd Read: ______
After 3rd Read: _______
1. Start the lesson by explaining to your student how being a fluent reader can help you with your reading as well as becoming a better reader. "Today, we are going to be learning about fluency and how fluency can help us become better readers. Reading with fluency means that you are able to recognize words without hesitation and with ease. One of the best ways to become a fluent reader is by rereading books. We are going to re-read the same book over and over and see if we can read words more quickly each time we read."
2. Next, ask the children if they remember what they should do to a word that they are unfamiliar with. "Students, do you remember what you are supposed to do if you get to a word that you don't know? The word blocks is in Sammy the Seal, let's pretend I am reading when I come across the word blocks". Write the word "blocks" on the board. "To figure out this word I would first find the vowel. Then I would cover up the other letters. The vowel in the word blocks is 'o', I know that this says /o/. Everyone open their mouths to form an 'o' and then point to your mouth while saying 'ahahah'. This is how you remember the /o/ sound. Let's look at the first letter which is a't' and it says /t/. Then let's look at the second letter 'l' that says /l/. Now put the first three letters together. That makes /blo/. Now uncover the rest of the word. We know that 'ck' makes the /ck/ and that 's' makes the /s/, Now we can blend the /blo/ /ck/ /s/ together, and we now know that the word is blocks."
3. Then, write the sentence Hats are big fat caps. "I will read this sentence to you, make sure you pay close attention to how I am reading the sentence". (Read slowly, without fluency). "Hhhats are biiig faaat cccaps. Did you hear and see that this sentence was slowly read and hard for me to understand what the sentence was about? Now, I will read it again and remember what the sentence was about". (Read with fluency). "Hats are big fat caps. That was much easier for me the second time. This was to show you that rereading a sentence more than once will help us understand the sentence better that we do not understand. I was also able to read the sentence much faster. Remember that reading fast is important. However, it is also important not to read too quickly. Make sure you take a small pause in between the words you read. This way the sentence does not sound like one long word".
4. Pass out a copy of Sammy the Seal to each student. "This book is about a seal named Sammy that gets adventurous one day and decides to leave the zoo for a day. He ends up in a big city. Let's read on to find out what happens on this day away from the zoo"! Have children read the book by themselves first as you read it aloud to become familiar with the book.
5. After reading the book, students will break into groups of two. Each group will be given the Speed Reading and Partner Check sheets, as well as a stopwatch. Each child will be told to read the book three times. The listener (the person not reading) will time the student reading three times and record those times on Speed Record Sheet. You will also tell children that the idea is that each time you read you are to read faster and smoother because it will help you to remember words. The listener will also fill out the Partner Sheet after the second and third readings. "Students I will now show you how to use the two sheets I just handed you. Let's pretend Gracie is my partner. Gracie will read first and as soon as she begins I will start the timer. When she is finished reading the book, I will stop the timer and record the time listed on the watch in the first blank of the speed reading sheet". (Model this for the children) "Let's pretend it took her 2 minutes and 50 seconds to read the book. I would write 2:50 in the first blank on the sheet. You will also do this for the second and third time your partner reads. For the partner check sheet, you record things on this sheet after the second and third time your partner reads. Remember what they read and if it passed the checklist then put a check next to the sheet". (Model this) "Let's say that after Gracie's second reading she remembered more words, I would then put a check under the first column that says 'After the 2nd' next to 'remembered more words'. Everyone get started"!
Assessment: To make my assessment on students individually, I will have each of the students read the book Sammy the Seal to me and as they read I will time them. After they have read I will check for comprehension by making sure they complete the following checklist. I will also look at their Speed Reading and Partner Sheet that they filled out.
Hoff, Syd. Sammy the Seal. New York, New York. Harper Collins Publishers, 1959.
Yancey, Noie. Read, Read, Read as Fast as You Can
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