Growing Independence and Fluency Lesson: Ready, Set, Read Expressively!


geeky girl 

Maria Chambers

Rationale:  This lesson will help students to become more fluent readers.  It is very important for children to read with fluency.  Using one minute reads and repeated readings are great tools for students to help them become fluent readers.  It is important for fluent readers to read voluntarily, so providing students time in class to read silently can be very beneficial to their reading success.

Materials: Stopwatch, evaluation sheets, speed record sheet, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst

   Speed record sheet:                                                                                                                                                        


Reading 1:


Reading 2:


Reading 3:





Evaluation Sheet:


After 2nd                                                After 3rd reading



Remembered more words



Read faster



Read smoother



Read with expression



  1. Today we are going to talk about becoming fluent readers.  They are a few things you need to know to become a fluent reader.  First you must read smoothly.  Reading smoothly means to connect the words in a text.  I will read a sentence and you tell me if I am reading it smoothly.  My words should flow very smoothly.  I ran to the store.  I will make this sentence sound disconnected first.  Then I will read the sentence again and read it smoothly so they will know the difference.  The next thing you should do to read fluently is to read with expression.  I will read the sentence I ran to the store with expression and without expression so they will know the difference.  The last thing you should know about reading fluently is that you must read quickly.  I will read the sentence quickly and slowly.  To help you improve your fluency we are going to do repeated readings.  This is where you read a book over and over again.
  2. Now I will review with my students what they need to do when they get stuck on a word.  Who can tell me what you would do to read a word you do not know?  Well, you cover up the word and read it starting with the vowel, then the letters before the vowel, and then the ending letters and then you blend the letters together.  If you still cannot get a word than you can crosscheck and read the rest of the sentence.  If you get stuck on a word when you are reading use these strategies, they will help you to become more fluent readers.  Today we are going to read Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst. First I will have the students read a sentence in the book fast and then slow.  I will then have them read a sentence with expression and then with none. Then I will have them read a sentence smoothly and then choppy.  Finally, I will have the students read the book silently a few times so they can become familiar with the book.
  3. Now everyone is going to get to read this book with a partner.  One person will have a stopwatch and they will time their partner in one minute reads.  I will have the students fill out a speed record sheet.  The students will read the passage two times and the recorder will right down their times on the record sheet.  Their times should improve.  Then the partners will switch so everyone has a chance to be timed on their reading. 
  4. Now everyone will stay with their partners because they are going to practice reading smoothly and with expression.  I will give the students an evaluation sheet.  On it there are boxes that say remembered more words, read faster, read smoother, and read with expression.  The recorder will circle the boxes on the evaluation sheet if their partner does these things correctly.  They will read the passage three times and hopefully they will improve all of these skills.
  5. Now the students will use their speed record sheet to time their last one minute read.  Their recorder will be making sure that their partner is reading fast, smooth and with expression.  Hopefully the students will be able to read the whole book in one minute.  If they cannot finish the book, the recorder will count the amount of words that the student did read within 1 minute.
  6. Assessment:  I will have each student come to my desk and read me the book and I will do a one minute reading.  I will have the other students pick a decodable book and read silently at their desks. 


Developing Reading Fluency,

Angela, Long, Running Towards Fluency,

Book: Viorst, Judith.  Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. Anthenum Books. 1972
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