Fly Away with Fluency

Gaining Fluency Lesson Design
Maribeth Ward



In order to become faster readers who read with more expression, one must develop fluency in their reading. Fluent reading is the ability to recognize words automatically, and being able to read them easily. Fluent reading is important in developing silent reading skills as well as a child's overall reading success. The design of this particular lesson is to offer repetitive readings of texts for students so that they become more fluent readers, and to help students understand how significant fluent reading is.


-Speed Reading Record for each student

-Partner check sheet for each student

-Stop Watches - one for each pair of students

-Pencils for students



-Coverup buddies for each student (a colored popsicle stick with eyes on the end)

-Copies of the book for each student or pair of students: Kite Day at Pine Lake by Sheila Cushman & Rona Kornblum. c1990.


Speed Reading Record:

       Name:_________________________            Date:___________


                        - After 1st read            _______

                        - After 2nd read           _______

                        - After 3rd read            _______


Partner Check Sheet for students to assess their partner's fluency:

As I listened to my partner read, he/she:

                                                                           After 2nd           After 3rd

                        1. Remembered more words         _______          _______

                        2. Read faster                               _______          _______

                        3. Read smoother                          _______          _______

                        4. Read with expression                 _______          _______



<!1.     I will begin by telling the students that to become fluent readers, they must practice so that they will read with more accuracy. It is important that we learn to read with speed so that we can read things quickly and easily. Reading a story over and over again will help us all to become more fluent readers.  I will ask them what they think fluency is, and we will discuss its definition and its importance as a class. Today our class is going to read a story many times so that each of us will become more fluent readers. Each of us should set a goal to read faster each time we read a book.


<!2.      I will talk about the coverup strategy so that the students can use this while reading.  Whenever you come across difficult words while reading, you can use a coverup buddy to help you figure out what the word is.  I will write the word ''script'' on the board, and model how to use the coverup buddy in decoding this word.  As you come across a difficult word, use your coverup buddy to help you sound the word out. I will cover up all the letters except the ''i'' and pronounce the sound of the short i=/i/.  Then I am going to uncover the letters one at a time leading up to the vowel, s=/s/, c=/k/, and r =/r/. These three sounds together make the ''scr'' sound. I will then combine those three sounds with the vowel sound to say, ''scri'' Finally, I will focus on the sounds that come after the vowel, p=/p/ and the t=/t/.  Then I will put the whole word together.


<!3.      Next I am going to model fluent reading.  I am going to write the following sentence on the board: ''I want to fly kites at the park today.'' Everyone listen to me as I read this sentence to you.  At first I am going to read it slowly without fluency.  I ... want ... to ... fly ... kites ... at ... the ... park ... today. I want ... to fly...  kites ... at the park ... today. I want to fly ... kites ... at the park today. In order to get better at reading this sentence, I'll need to read it again and again. Doing this repetitively will help me read quicker so that I can read with more expression. Now I will show you how to read it faster with fluency: I want to fly kites at the park today.  Does this way sound better to you? Is it easier to understand? It is much easier for people to listen when something is read fluently and quickly. That is why we need to practice reading fluently and quickly. When we read to each other, we want it to be easy to listen to so that we can focus on the meaning of the words.


<!4.      Next, each student will receive a copy of the book Kite Day at Pine Lake.  They will each have a chance to read it by themselves before reading it aloud with a partner for timed readings.  This book is about some children who enjoy flying their kites at the lake. A young boy named Bob wants to fly kites with the other kids at the lake, but he is sad because he does not have his own kite. Will Bob end up getting a kite of his own? Well, let's all read the story to find out.  After the students finish reading Kite Day at Pine Lake, we will discuss the events of the story. 


<!5.      Next, the students will break up into groups of two, and I will give each set of partners a stopwatch for the timed reading. Each child will get a Partner Check Sheet and Speed Reading Record.  Both children will read the book three times to each other.  The listener will time each reading and give a report after the second and third readings.  They will also record the times of each reading on the Speed Reading Record.  Children should try to be positive and encouraging, giving no criticism or advice.  The child simply marks what he hears on the evaluation sheet.  Each of you will read the book three times with your partner.  Time each reading with the stopwatch I gave you, and record the time it took for your partner to read the book on your Speed Reading Record. After the second and third times your partner reads the book, you will mark the evaluation sheet.  You may look at the times to determine if your partner is reading faster each time.  Explain the rules regarding criticism, etc. 


Assessment: The students will each bring me their Speed Reading Record and their Partner Checklist. Each student will do one minute reads individually for me so that I can check for fluency and accuracy.  I will also evaluate the reading record and partner checklist they turned in. 


Cushman, Sheila and Rona Kornblum. Kite Day at Pine Lake. 1990.

Marsden, Brigette. Hurry, Off We Go!

Murray, Bruce.  Developing Reading Fluency

Tate, Natalie. "Kites are Slow, Reading is Fast"

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