Ashley Nungesser
Growing independence and fluency

Fluency is Fantastic

Rationale:  In order for children to enjoy reading, they have to be able to read with fluency and comprehension.  For a child to successfully read fluently, they have to understand how to blend words.  They also need to know how to read swiftly and smoothly in order for reading to be enjoyable.  Repeated readings are a way for children to accomplish fluency and begin to enjoy reading.

Materials: Chalk, sentence strips for phrases, Multiple copies of What will the Seal Eat (Phonics Readers-Long Vowels. Educational Insights. 1990), sentence strips from the story, partner sheets with checklist that checks fluency and expression made by teacher, checklist for assessment

1) Introduce the lesson by explaining to the children that in order for reading to be fun, they must know how to decode and blend words they donít know quickly.  Tell them that they are going to practice their blending skills in order to become fluent readers.  Now, letís review decoding.
2) Students, remember the method we use if we donít know a word is called decoding.  First we take the vowel sound and then we move to the first letter.  Then we blend the first and second sound into the remaining sounds.  For example, if we had the word date, we would start with the a and the put d-a together and then put it all together to say d-a-t-e.  Letís try a couple of made up words and see if we can decode them.  Example words are, yain, jeek, snitting and bathtail.
3) Next, explain to them that blending is what we do when we put the whole word together.  When we put all the letters together in date, we were blending.  If I said a word like this t-r-ai-n, you canít understand it very well and it makes it hard to understand, but if I put it all together youíre able to hear the word and understand it better.  This is what makes us become fluent readers.  Lets practice putting a phrases of words together, ďI-went-to-the-store-and-bought-some-candy.  When we are able to say the word all together like that, reading becomes fun because we are not chopping up the phrases and itís easier to understand.
4) Now letís practice blending some words together by singing them in a song.  I need everyone to repeat after me and sing to the tune of ďThe Mulberry BushĒ:
Now we will say the phrase out loud,
The phrase out loud
The phrase out loud
Now we will say the phrase out loud,
So put the sounds to-geth-er
Say: I-gave-the-dog-a-treat. (Place sentence strip on board while saying it.  Then have the children repeat smoothly.  Other phrases: Letís go to the library to find a book, reading fast is fun, silent reading is great.)
5) Now we are going to get with a partner and read What will the seal eat.  I want you to take turns reading to each other and while youíre reading, I want you to practice reading smoothly and with expression.  I want you to read to each other two times.  After one person has read twice, I want the partner to make a report on their reading and then the next person will read and when they are done their partner will report on their reading.  Each person is only supposed to say helpful thing and no negative comments.
6) For assessment, walk around as the children are reading and show them a sentence strip from the book and see if they are able to read it fluently and record the time they read it in also.  Have a checklist for each child.

Eldredge, Lloyd, J.  Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classrooms.  Prentice Hall.  1995.  pp. 59.

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