Quick As a Mouse

By: Gina Thomas

Beginning Reading

Rationale: To become a successful reader, children must learn to read fluently.  They must read, read, and read some more! Children need to perform repeated readings of the same text in order to gain the characteristics of a successful reader.  Some of those characteristics are the ability to read fast, smooth, and with expression.  When children become fluent readers, they increase their comprehension which is the ultimate goal of reading!

- Chalk
- Chalk board
- Scardey Mouse by Alan MacDonald
- Checklist

1. Introduce the lesson: “Fluent reading is being able to read a text fast, smooth, and with expression.  It is an important part of becoming a successful reader.  It takes a lot of practice.  Can anyone tell me what it means to read with expression?” (Review the terms making sure everyone knows what each term means before moving on. An example answer would be: "It means to read like you really are the characters and to read happy.") “Today class, we are going to practice rereading the same text or sentence so that we can learn to develop fluency. Let’s get started!” (Remind children that sometimes fluent readers do not know every word). 

2. Write a practice sentence on the board: (I am very scared of mice!) Read the sentence very slow to the children.  For example, I am verrry scaaarred of miiicce! Sound them out slowly again and practice the silent cover-up method.  Read the sentence again smoothly and using expression. “Which way did you like it better, slow or fast? Why did you like it better?” (Hopefully the children will say it sounds better fast because you can understand it better).

3. Write another sentence on the board.  (There once was a mouse living in my kitchen!)  This time, divide the class into groups or partners.  Have them practice reading it to each other several times.  “Practice smooth reading with expression class.” When they have practiced it many times, ask them which way sounded better to them. “This is a great way to practice rereading and becoming a more fluent reader!”

4.  Read the book, Scaredy Mouse by Alan MacDonald out loud to the class. “Now, everyone needs to follow along with me in the copy I gave you so we can all learn and become familiar with the text.” (READ THE TEXT) “Did everyone see how I read smooth, fast, and used expression? I hope you did because you get to practice it now.”

5. “Now I want everyone to read the copy of Scaredy Mouse to themselves.  When you’re finished, you may choose another book from our class library to practice reading fluently.  Remember, if there are more than two words on a page that you don’t know, you might need to choose another book.”

6. Allow the children at least 30 minutes to accomplish these goals.

Assessment: Call on each child to bring their book to your desk and have them read at least one page from their book out loud to you.  Have a checklist ready so you can record their smoothness, speed, and fluency.

How many words in a minute--one minute read
How many words correct (accuracy)
Words they are struggling with



MacDonald, Alan. Scaredy Mouse, Scholastic Inc., 2002.

Routh, Yolanda.  Sh-Sh-Sh-Sh-Shhhhhh Readinghttp://www.auburn.edu/rdggenie/openings/routhgf.html

Stewart, Christi.  Ready, Set, Read!  http://www.auburn.edu/rdggenie/openings/stewartgf.html

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