Reading Fluency
Growing Independence & Fluency
Mitzi Milam

Rationale: Children should gain a better understanding of how to read with more fluency.  The skills involved in fluency include reading with expression, reading silently and reading at a smooth automatic pace.  Repeated reading will be the main focus of the activity to increase the emphasis of fluent reading.

Materials:  Paper and pencil (for the individual who makes up the list in step 3 of the lesson design); multiple copies of three other book selection (when the children break into group in step 5 they will have other book options besides Today I Feel Silly and Other Moods That Make my Day)

1) Begin the lesson by expressing to the group of children (4-6 should be the max to work with therefore, children will receive more individual help and each child has more opportunities to read) that being able to read is a great skill to acquire.  Although, every reader (even adults) can better their reading ability by becoming more fluent.  When reading aloud, more expression as you read is an excellent way to pull you audience in and have them deeply engrossed in the text.  One way to express ourselves more is by changing the pitch of you voice.  Another which we will practice today is by reread the text that will be read aloud in order to become more familiarized with the text.

2) Have any of you ever heard someone read a story and could not wait until the reader continued?  The reason you were so inticed by the book was probably because the reader was using wonderful expression and read the story with fluency.  If the reader had read the story slowly and fumbled with the text do you think you would have enjoyed the book?  Probably not because the word did not flow and therefore you may not have been able to completely understand what was going on with the characters in the story.

3) Next take out the book Today I Feel Silly and Other Moods That Make my Day to read to the children.  Model reading the book with little to no expression, and then reread the book with expression and smooth fluent wordage.  After the first read aloud ask the children if they enjoyed the story and if not what are some of the things I could have done to make the presentation of the book better.  As the discussion progresses have one child make a list of the things that I could have done in certain parts of the book to make the story more enjoyable.

4) When the children are finished brainstorming ideas reread the book (or depending on the age group have the children take turns read one page of the book) Stop after each page and have a brief discussion of what each reader did to make the story better by simple using their voice and reading techniques.

5) When each child has had a chance to read one or more pages in the book (depending on the number of pages in the book that you decide to use for your lesson) break the children into group and allow them to converse either on the book read earlier or another form of text.  The teacher should move from group to group and encourage conversation or be a helpful guide in modeling or observing a child read some of the text that the group selected.

6) When each group is finished conversing have them come back together as one large group. Have one or more person from each group model a few of the pages from their book. After each group presents their books have the other group whom are serving as the audience constructively critic or praise the presenters.

Assessment:  Have multiple copies of different book located in the reading center within you classroom so the children can have mini book section without your direct input. (some children may be shy and feel uneasy reading aloud in front of a large group therefore having the book available in the reading center may give some children the opportunity.  If any children want to practice their reading skills be sure and tell them that you will be available to have them read aloud to you and help them better their reading skills.  This informal activity will allow the teacher to see which children are willing to better their reading skills.  The children who do not pursue the activity may need a structured activity to make sure that they do receive at least a small amount of time enhancing their read aloud skills.

Reference: Marilyn Adams, Beginning to Read: Thinking and Learning about Print 1990

Click here to return to Illuminations

Further information