“Off To The Reading Races”

Stacy Snyder

Growing Independence and Fluency




Students will become fluent readers.  Children need to learn how to read faster, smoother, and more expressively.  Students will be able to work on their reading fluency through repeated and dyad reading. Rereading text will help students learn to read more words per minute.  By working with partners, students may learn new decoding skills and will receive more practice reading.  The more students read, the more their reading skills will improve.




-         One stopwatch per twp students

-         Worksheet with race track one it, one per student

-         Race car game pieces

-         Card with sentences on them for practice

-         Copy of Go Dog Go, by Dr. Seuss

-         Pencils




1. Introduce the lesson by explaining the concept of cross-checking.  Give an example of a sentence read the wrong way such as "Did you like which movie?." "Did that sentence make any sense?  No it did not, the sentence should say, "Did you like the movie”? Now you read is to make sure that the sentence makes sense when it’s read aloud. Next  tell the students that being able to read fluently is enjoyable and that today we are going to work on becoming fluent readers.

 2. "Today we are going to practice reading words as fast as we can.  I want you all to read as correctly and fast as you can”.  I will then model a sentence slowly decoding each word for them.  Next I will re-read the same sentence faster to show the students the difference and the goal of the lesson.

 3. Next, I want each of you to find a partner.  I am going to give each of you an index card with some sentences on them.  I want each of you to practice reading the sentences out loud to each other.  I want you to start slow to make sure you say all of the words correctly.  Then I want you to read the sentence faster and smoother.  Take turns reading the sentences to your partner.

 4. Read the book, Go Dog Go,  aloud using the shared reading concept.  Make sure the students follow along in their copy of the book.

 5. Explain to the students how fast fluent readers read and how they should all practice reading at a quicker pace to become more fluent.  “Now that we read the book I want you all to take one minute to flip through the book and pick out you favorite two pages.  I want you to take out your worksheet with the race track on it and your race car game piece.  One person will begin reading and the other person will time them with the stopwatch.  Then, boys and girls if the next time you read the same page your time has improved you get to move you race car one space on the track.  Then switch and the other partner will read while the second partner times”.  Once both partners have read the page twice, they should get ready to read it for the third time.  When they read it for the third time they will read it to another one of their classmates.  The classmate will use a check list to assess their reading.  They will take turns reading their favorite pages to each other.  After they finish this they will discuss what they liked about the book and what they did not like.  Then they will write a few sentences about what they liked about the book.    

6. Assessment

-         I will observe each group of students by walking around and listening to their fluency develop with the repeated readings.  I will look at the charts to see if they are improving their times.  I will also allow students more time to practice reading silently. At the end of the day just before they are about to go home I will allow the children to check out a book from the classroom with me and carry it home with them to read by themselves or with a parent.  This will be a way to get the parents involved with their child’s learning as well as motivate the child to learn.  This book does not have to be on the child’s level.  It can be any book that they would like to read.  These books will be different than the books we use in our speed lessons.  They will come from our classroom library.



Eldredge, J. Lloyd.  Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classrooms.  Englewood

Adams, Marilyn-Jager. Beginning To Read: Thinking and Learning about Print. 1990. pg. 88-94.



Peer Checklist

Name of reader:________________   


Your name:____________________


Check the list if the reader did the following:

 __________   Read smoothly.

___________  Read the words fast.

___________  Read most of the words correct.

___________  Read with expression.

___________  Cross checked unknown words.

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