Hurry, Hurry, Here We Go!

Growing independence and fluency

Amy ONeal



It is important for students to learn fluency in order to become a good reader. Acquiring fluency in reading is a big step to become an expert reader. Fluency occurs when words are automatically recognized. This lesson will assist students in becoming fluent and independent readers.



Class copy of What Will the Seal Eat?

Class set of stopwatches

Sheet for peer evaluation


Class set of Popsicle sticks painted yellow with two eyes on them

White board

Dry erase markers



1.) Begin the lesson by explaining to students the importance of fluency and why we need to become fluent readers.

Okay class today we are going to learn about becoming fluent readers. A fluent reader recognizes and reads words very quickly and almost automatic. If we were to read the same story a couple of times in a row, we will most likely be reading the story fluently by the last read. The best way to become a fluent reader is to practice, practice, practice.


2.) Explain to the students how to sound out unfamiliar words by using the cover up method. The will receive a stick that they will call buddy. This will be used to assist students in decoding unfamiliar words to become fluent readers.

            There are some words that we might come across while we are reading that we do not recognize and that is okay. When that happens I would like everyone to reach for his or her buddy. (Hand out class set of yellow Popsicle sticks with eyes on them) Place buddy so that you can only see the first letter. As you sound out that letter move buddy across the page to the right. Buddy will help you decode and sound out words that we are not familiar with.


3.) Now I will model fluent reading to the class. The sentence The seal is so hungry will be written on the board.

            Now I would like each of you to listen as I read this sentence. The first time I read the sentence I am going to read it slowly and without fluency. T-he---se--ea-l i-s---so--hungry. Now I am going to read the sentence with fluency. The seal is so hungry. Which way sounded better when I was reading the sentence? It is much easier to understand a sentence that is read quickly and fluently. That is why we are all going to become independent fluent readers together


4.) I will now pass out the class set of the book, What Will the Seal Eat?Each student will read the book to him or herself before they are broken up into partners.

            This story is about a hungry seal. He cannot find one thing to eat. He must find something to eat in order to give him energy to swim. At one point he even tries to eat beans! Lets all read the story to find out if seal will find something to eat so he can carry on with his swim.

After every student has completed the book we will discuss the book and what happened.


5.) Next I will put the students into partner groups. Each group will receive 2 partner evaluation sheets and one stopwatch. The partners will read one at a time, three different times. The partner that is not reading will use the stopwatch to time the reader and record the three reading times on the partner evaluation sheet.

            Every please get into your partner groups. Each person will read the story three times. You will alternate reading the story with your partner. If you are not the person reading the story you are to time your partner. You will start the timer when your partner begins reading and stop it when he is done. Once he or she is done you are to record the amount of time it took your partner to read the story on the peer evaluation sheet. Each person reads the story three times and times your partner reading the story three times. If you come across unfamiliar words just use your buddy.


Assessment: When each child has completed their sheet they will come to me one by one. They will read the story to me aloud and I will review their peer evaluation sheet.



Cushman, Sheila. What Will the Seal Eat? Educational Insights. Carson, CA. 1990.

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