Reading Rock Stars

Growing Independence and Fluency
Julianne Robinson

Rationale:  Fluent reading is when one recognizes words easily and automatically as they read them. If readers want to be able to read quickly, smoothly and with expression they must become fluent readers. Readers become fluent by making most of the words they read sight words. When a student has mastered fluency they can begin to develop their silent reading ability. The lesson will give the students the knowledge of how important automatic reading is. First, students will learn a cover-up strategy to help them decode difficult words. Then, to practice fluency students will work with partners reading and re-reading a passage several times. Partners will take records of student's progress (speed, expression, and accuracy).

Materials: speed reading record for each student, partner check sheet for each student, stop watches for the couple of students, pencils for students, whiteboard, marker, cover up sticks for each student, give copies of the book to every student: Missing Chime by Matt Sims, Speed Reading Record:

Name:_________________________ Date:___________


- After 1st read _______

- After 2nd read _______

- After 3rd read _______

This is the partner check sheet for students to evaluate their partner's fluency:
When I take note of my partners read, he/she can:

After 2nd After 3rd

1. Remembered more words         _______ _______

2. Read faster                                   _______ _______

3. Read smoother                            _______ _______

4. Read with expression                  _______ _______


1.    Begin lesson by explaining to the students that in order to become fluent readers they must learn to read with fluency and accuracy. Also, they must retain the information of what they have read in order to comprehend the meaning of the text.

"Class, today we are going to practice reading a little faster and with accuracy. When we learns to read quickly and accurately that means we can read with fluency. We must learn to read fluently so that we can read things quickly and easily without much having to think so hard, that way we can focus on the meaning of the words we are reading. To become a fluent reader we must read the same book several times. Today we are going to practice reading a story many times so that we can become more skillful fluent readers. I want you to try and read the book faster each time that you read it. I know you can do it!

2. Explain to the students how to use the cover up approach that can help them decode harder words while reading. While reading, you may come across some difficult words. One way to help you read a word that is too hard is by using your cover up stick. Write the word champ on the board. By using my helpful cover up stick I am going to demonstrate how to decode a word that is harder to read.
"When you come across a word that is too hard to read use the cover up stick to cover up parts or chunks of the word so you can sound it out. Cover up all the letters except the vowel (a) and sound out the sound of the short a=/a/. Next, I will look at the letters leading up to the vowel, ch=/ch/. Finally I will look at the m=/m/ and the p=/p/. So I am going to look at just the vowel, and I know that the short a says /a/ sound, remember like the doctor telling you to open wide. Next, I am going to look at the letters leading up to the vowel, so ch=/ch/ so I have /ch//a/ and finally the end of the word, /m/ and /p/, so now we can read our word that we could not read before, /ch//a//m//p/ by blending all the sounds together. As you read your book and you come across a tough word, remember to use your cover up stick."

3. Next I am going to show you how to read with fluency. I am going to write the following sentence on the board: The children love flying kites.
"Now I want everyone to use their listening ears as I read the sentence. The first time I read it, I will read it very slowly and influent. The---children---love---flying---kites. Now I am going to read it fluently and faster: The children love flying kites. Which one do you think sounded better? Which one do you think is easier to understand when I read it? It is much easier to listen to reading that is fluent and fast than reading that is slow and is not fluent that is why we all need to practice reading faster and fluently so that you and anyone else that is listening to you read can understand what you are trying to read."

4. Now I am going to give each student a copy of the book Missing Chime. Each student will get his or her own copy of the book while reading it to themselves.
" This story is about a little boy who stumbles across an old wind chime in a store in his town. The chime fascinated the boy. But one day one of the chimes went missing. The store owner is left to figure out where it went! We'll have to read to find out where the chime disappeared to."

 After the students finish reading we will discuss the events of the story.

5. Next, the students will be assigned a partner and will be given one stop watch per partner as well as a Partner Check Sheet and Speed Reading Record for each child. Each child will read the book three times. The listener will time each reading and give a report after the second and third readings. They will record the times of each reading on the Speed Reading Record. The reports are to only be positive. The student records the answers on the evaluation sheet. I will model this for the students.

"Working with your partner, take turns reading the book to each other. While your partner is reading the other person should use the stop watch to take time. You will record the time on your Speed Reading Record. After the second and third readings, you will mark the evaluation sheet. Use the other times to see if your partner is reading faster each time. Let's get started!"

Assessment: The students will each bring me their Speed Reading Record and partner checklist. I will perform one minute reads with each child to check for fluency and accuracy. I will also evaluate their reading record and partner checklist.

More information on Fluency:

Lesson adapted from:

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