Super Speedy Readers!!

Growing Independence and Fluency Lesson Plan

Mallory Cadrette

Rationale:  Students read slowly when they first begin reading, but gain speed as words become automatic.  Word recognition becomes faster and more automatic through decoding.  Fluency allows students to focus on comprehension instead of on struggling to decode words.  Some indicators of fluency are faster, more expressive, silent, and involuntary reading.  Fluent readers also enjoy reading, because they are not struggling with each and every word but have a larger sight vocabulary.  Reading and rereading decodable words in a connected text helps students become more fluent readers.  This lesson will help children learn how to read faster and more fluently.  They will work on their reading fluency through repeated readings under time pressure.  The students will gain fluency through repeated readings and one-minute reads.


-Class set of decodable books, Red Gets Fed by Sheila Cushman (one per student)



-dry erase board and marker

-one minute read charts for each student

-fluency rubric for each child

-progress chart for each child (a tree with a monkey that climbs up to get bananas; the tree has numbers along it to signify how many words were read per minute; the monkey climbs the height associated with the number of words read in a minute)

One Minute Read Chart:

Name:______________________  Date:____________

1st minute: ______

2nd minute: ______

3rd minute: ______


Fluency Rubric:

Name:______________________  Evaluator:_______________________  Date: ____________

I noticed that my partner: (put an X in the blank)

                                                   After 2nd    After 3rd

Read Faster                                 ______      ______

Read Smoother                           ______      ______

Read with Expression                  ______      ______

Remembered more words            ______      ______


1. Introduce the lesson by explaining the difference between a fluent and beginning reader.  "Today, we are going to practice reading more fluently.  Who knows what fluently means?  That's exactly right!  Fluent readers read fast.  They also read automatically.  (Write the following on the board: 'My mom is the best!')  A beginning reader sounds like this when reading the sentence on the board: 'Mmmmyy mmmoomm iiisss tthhee bbbeeessstt.'  Then they might say 'Mmyy- my- mmoomm- mom- is- the- bbeesstt- best' stumbling over the words and repeating words that they do not recognize.  A beginning reader who can read the words automatically might say 'My mom is the best' but sound like a robot, because he or she does not read with expression.  But a fluent reader who recognizes words automatically and reads with expression sounds like this: 'My mom is the best!'  A fluent reader sounds like this, because all of the words jump out to the reader.  The only way to become fluent is to practice.  The more practice that you have with a book, the faster you are able to read it.  Reading a book that you have already read before also helps you become more fluent with books that you have never even seen before.  Let's get practicing, so that we can become fluent readers too!"

2. First, I will review the cover-up strategy with all of them.  "Okay everybody, what do we do when we come to a word that we don't know when we are reading?  That's right, we use cover-ups.  For example if I saw this word (write clack on the board) when I was reading and did not know it, I would cover-up all the letters (c, l, c, k) but the vowel a because I know that a = /a/.  Now look at the letters before the vowel a, the cl.  Blend these phonemes with the vowel a.  This sounds like /c/l/a/.  Then blend the letters at the end of the word, the ck, with the rest of the letters to make /c/l/a/ck/.  When you see a word that you don't know how to read, use the cover-up strategy to help you decode the word."

3. Tell the students that: "To understand what we have read, we cannot just focus on reading fast.  We can crosscheck what we read to make sure our sentence makes sense.  For example, if I read this sentence (Write on the board: "The duck clacked and clacked.") as "The dock clucked and clucked" then I could use my crosschecking skills to determine that a dock doesn't cluck so my reading doesn't make sense.  I would then reread my sentence correctly as "The duck clucked and clucked."

4.  I will split the class up into partner pairs.  I will then pass out our book, Red Gets Fed, to each child; I will also hand out a Fluency Rubric and One Minute Read Chart to each individual child.  I will give the following book talk about Red Gets Fed, but will be careful not to give away the solution to the problem: "Red is a pet dog.  He is a sweet, but mischievous dog.  He goes and bothers Meg trying to wake her up so that she will get him something to eat.  Do you think that Meg will wake up and feed Red?  We'll have to read to find out what happens."

5. I will tell each student to take turns reading to their partner.  The person who is not reading will record how many words the "reader" reads within one minute.  The "recorder" will tell the "reader" when to start and stop by using the stopwatch.  The "recorder" will then make a note on the One Minute Read Chart about how many words were read in that minute, while the "reader" can move his monkey up the tree to the correct height (based on number of words read).  They will then switch turns (the "reader" becoming the "recorder" and vice versa) and repeat the process.

6. After both students have completed the entire book once, I will have them practice by doing a repeated reading of the same text.  This time I will also remind each "recorder" to fill out the Fluency Rubric after the "reader" has completely read the book.

7.  Allow the students to do one more rereading of the book for a total of three readings of the book.  Remind the students to continue to record their partner's one minute reads and to fill in the Fluency Rubric.  I will allow the students to discuss how they improved within their readings and rereadings of the book with their partner.

8.  I will then collect the students' completed Fluency Rubrics and One Minute Read Charts.  I will compare the students'  first, second, and last readings to check for improvement in fluency.  For assessment, I will have each child read a passage to me in the reading center out of Red Gets Fed.  The passage will contain approximately 60 words.  I will assess how fast they read by timing them and recording their time on a checklist.  They will then be able to read the passage through two more times and try to improve their score.  Our class will also have a discussion about Red Gets Fed to make sure that everyone comprehended the text and did not just fly through the reading without understanding the text.



Cushman, Shelia. Red Gets Fed. Educational Insights: Carson, CA, 1990.

Melton, Shealy.  Ready to Race. 


Murray, Bruce. Developimg Reading Fluency.


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