Lindsey Odom
Growing Independence and Fluency
Read with Expression!

Rationale: This lesson is designed to help students become more fluent in their reading.  Reading every day is important for a student to become an independent reader.  Repeated reading will help the student read more smoothly and with more expression. This also allows the student to become very confident in his or her reading.

Materials: Enough copies of the Three Little Pigs by James Marshall and published by Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers for each child.  Sixteen tube socks, Markers.


1. The teacher will first introduce the four books by doing a book talk for each.  This will get the students interested in reading each to find out what will happen.

2. ãI am going to read a book to all of you.ä  Then use this time to model to the class, by showing them how to read smoothly and with expression as you read them the book.  Then say, ãClass, you need to listen carefully so that you will become a fluent and independent reader.ä  The teacher should have read the book prior so that they have also done a repeated reading.  This way the teacher is able to read smoothly and with expression.

3. Then say, ãI will divide you into groups of four and give each person in the group the same book.  Everyone in the group must first read the book silently, and then take turns reading parts of the book with expression.  ãAfter you have done this read silently one more time.  One person from the group will read the book aloud, so choose one person.  Everyday someone different will read to the class, so everyone will get an opportunity.

4. Give the class plenty of time to read their books.  Explain to them that if they are stuck on a word to sound it out using phonemes.  You need to model this by reading a sentence from your book.  Show the students how to do cover-ups to figure out the word.  After they are finished say, ãNow that you have all done repeated readings of this book, we will make a puppet for your book.ä  Pass out one sock and markers to each group.  ãHere is a sock to make a puppet, pick your favorite character and begin to make him with this sock.  You will not have long so use your time wisely.  You may use the markers to draw the eyes, hair, nose, lips, and any other feature your character has.ä

5. Pick a group to share first.  The student will stand and read the entire book while holding the sock puppet.  When he or she is finished, encourage the class to clap.  ãEveryone give him/her a hand.  He/she read so well.ä  When all of the groups have gone, explain how the next day they will get anew book to do the same activity.

6. Finish by reading another book, modeling reading it with expression to them.

7. Assessment: Everyday while a student is sharing the book with the class; listen for fluency by providing yourself with a checklist while doing so.  After a few days, depending on how many children are in your class, everyone would have had an opportunity to share with the class.  Hopefully, by repeated readings, the students will become more confident with him/herself and feel comfortable reading to the class.  Having the sock puppet will relieve some of the tension.  The student will feel as if the class is looking at the puppet, not him/her.


Eldridge, J. Lloyd, Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classrooms.  Prentice Hall.  New Jersey: 1995. Pp. 125.

The Reading Genie. ãEmergent Literacy.ä

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