"Expression Equals Enjoyment"
Growing Independence and Fluency
By: Meg Crow

Rationale: Reading fluency is the ability to recognize words accurately, rapidly, and automatically. After this is achieved, it is important for the child to learn to read with expression, which is a key aspect of reading fluency.  As children learn to read expressively, they gain more understanding of the material and realize that reading can be very enjoyable. One of our goals, as teachers, should be to make children excited about reading.  That is why the focus of this lesson is on teaching students to use expression when reading. The children will learn this concept by watching me model fluent and expressive reading and then by practicing reading with expression with a partner.

Materials:Pig and Crow by: Kay Chorao (enough copies for each child to have one); cards with types of expressions written on them (mad, sad, excited, loud, whisper); "Express Yourself" evaluation sheets (enough for each child); bookmarks which were given to the students the week before; crayons, construction paper.

Pig and Crow "Express Yourself" Evaluation Sheet

1. My partner's voice changed as he/she read……………YES or NO

2. My partner acted like he/she was enjoying reading……………YES or NO

3. The way my partner read Pig and Crow made me enjoy the book…………YES or NO

4. My partner sounded sad and happy in the same story………YES or NO

1. "Today we are going to work on reading with expression. But first, I would like us to review what we have learned about reading a word that you do not recognize right away. I have put a word on the board (express) and I am going to cover it up with my bookmark.  Now I will uncover one letter at a time. First we have e=/e/, then x=/cks/. We know that e and x together say /ecks/"…….(continue until you have read the word express). "You may use the bookmarks I gave you last week to help you as you read today."
2. "It is now time to talk about reading with expression.  This means that you should not read in the same tone the entire time when reading aloud. When a character in a book is mad, read like you are mad, and when a character is happy, change your voice to sound happy. It is very important to read with expression because it helps you understand and enjoy what you are reading.  Your audience will also enjoy listening to you more if you read expressively."
3. " I am going to read part of the book, Pig and Crow. Please listen and watch my face as I read without expression." (I will read the book in a monotone voice.) "Wasn't that boring? Now, listen as I read with expression." (I will read to the students, changing my face and voice to match the character's expression). "Didn't you enjoy that much more, students?"
4. Pass out copies of Pig and Crow, as well as the evaluation sheets.  Give each student a partner to work with and explain to them that they are going to take turns reading Pig and Crow to each other.  Tell them to listen carefully and respectfully to their partner.  Also, after they have each read the book they should score their partner by marking YES or NO to each question on the sheet. (I will walk around the room and observe the children reading).
5. For assessment: After each child has finished reading and scoring, I will bring the class back together. "Now we are going to play a little game. Everyone open up your Pig and Crow book. I am going to hold up a card and each card has a different expression on it. We are going to go around the room and when it is your turn, I would like you to read a sentence from the book with the expression on the card. (Demonstrate an example for them by showing the "mad' card and reading a sentence from the book with in a mad tone of voice.)
6. When each child has had a turn to read expressively, and if time allows, they can each draw one scene from the book that shows pig or crow being happy, mad, sad, or confused.

Reference:  Eldredge,J.Lloyd.  Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classrooms.  Brigham
Young University. Prentice Hall,Mew Jersey (1995). Pg.60-61.

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