Ready, Set, Read!

 Kim Willis

Growing Independence and Fluency



Rationale:   For a child to read smoothly they ought to be able to read faster and more efficiently than when they first started.  When decoding words becomes automatic and effortless, reading becomes a much more enjoyable experience.  The way to accomplish an enjoyable reading experience is for the child to read and reread decodable words in a connected text.  The more work that is done with a particular piece of text, the more efficient the text becomes to them.  This lesson will help children read more efficiently. 

Materials:  Whiteboard with the sentence “The car has four wheels and the school bus has six.”  written on it, individual pieces of paper with the sentence (My little brother likes to eat ice cream) written on it, a piece of cardboard with a column drawn on it for each student, a small cutout of a jogger, one stopwatch for every two children, several different books of different reading levels (i.e Stellaluna by Janell Cannon), and pencils.

1. Lets begin by talking about how important it is for readers to read both quickly and efficiently.  Not only do our words sound better when we read this way, but it also helps us to make more sense of what we are reading.  This means that the stories are more interesting and fun to read, and less of a chore or a stressful endeavor.  The first thing we should do is use the cover-up technique.  Remember when we practiced this?  Write sratch on the board.  If I saw this word I would cover up everything but the a, like so (cover the scr and tch). I know that a=/a/. Now look at what comes before the vowel, scr=/scr/. Blend them together to get /scr/ /a/. Now look at the end of the word- tch=/ch/. Put it all together and you have /scr/ /a/ /ch/.  Whenever you see an unfamiliar word, use the cover up method to try to decode it.  I am going to read a sentence one time through just like a beginning reader would and then I am going to read it again like a really good reader would read it.  Listen closely to the difference.  “Th-e c-ar h-a-s f-ou-r- wh-ee-l-s a-n-d th-e sc-h-oo-l b-us h-a-s s-ix.”  That didn’t sound quite right did it?  It sounded too slow.  Now let me read it again.  Notice my speed this time. “The car has four wheels and the school bus has six.”  That sounds much faster and clearer.

 2. Now get into groups of two.  I am going to give you each a sentence to work with (My little brother likes to eat ice cream).   I want you to read the sentence through for the first time out loud to each other.  Listen to the way that it sounds the first time that you read it. Then read the sentence silently to yourself at least five times.   Reading the sentence repeatedly will help you with your speed.  Then I want you to read the sentence again out loud to your partner.  Notice how different it sounds.  What improved?  Did it sound better when you read it fast or slow? 

3.  I am going to give each group a book to read.  While one of you reads the book the other one is going to be the timer.  You will be timed for one minute.  Read as many words as you can.  I will be walking around to help you.  We are going to do this several times so that you can become a faster and more efficient reader!

4. After one minute is up you will count how many words you read and place your jogger on that number on the track.  Then you will switch and your partner will do the same thing.  Before you start again, make a mark with your pencil on your track on the first number of words that you read so that we can see how much faster you are getting.  After a couple of times reading the book, your runner will get farther and farther on the track!

 Assessment:  I will assess the students by looking at their progress chart.  They will mark on the track where they began and where they ended and turn it in to me for evaluation. 

Practicing Smarter Not Harder is Best by: Leslie S. O’Neal

The Reading Race by Brandi Shirley

Cannon, Janell.  Stellaluna.  Scholastic Book, 1993.

Ready, Set ,Read by Christi Stewart

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