Read, Read, Read as Fast as you Can

Growing Independence and Fluency

Noie Yancey


Rationale: Fluency is an important skill to master in reading. Fluency is when you can read more automatically because you have developed more sight words. this lesson will teach children that you become more fluent by reading then re-reading. Students will complete three one minute reads of the same passage to see how re-reading helps you become familiar with more words.


*       Beginning chapter book- I will use Bass Lake- you should have enough for at least half the class

*       Stopwatches or timers (enough for half the class and countdown timers work best)

*       Class set of copies of these sentences

I like to hike in the woods and at the lake.

We will eat lunch at the lake and watch the boats go down river.

You can watch this movie after you do your homework.

*       Chart for each student that can show how they moved up. I will use the monkey climbing to the top of the banana tree as my chart and I will create it.

*       A piece of paper for the reader to record how many words they read each time to turn in so you can see progress.

*       Cover- up critter (Popsicle stick with crazy eyes)

*       High light tape


1. Explain what fluency is, children need to know what it is and why it is important. Fluency in reading is when you are able to read more accurate and without trying very hard. It is important because you begin to understand the story when you are able to read it more smoothly.

2. I will then go over the cover-up technique with the students. I will remind them how we use our cover-up critter and how it helps us decode words we do not know. Say: Sometimes, we come across words that we do not know right away. Something we can use to help us figure these words out is to use our cover-up critter. I will show the class the cover-up critter and model how to decode a word using my cover up critter. Let’s see if we can use our cover-up critter to figure out this word. I will write the word crime on the whiteboard. Now watch what I do. I will cover-up the cr and the m. I know that (i_e) says /I/, so next I will sound out what becomes before the vowel, which cr. I will say each sound that these letters make, and then blend them together to get (cri). Last I will look at the end of the word (m)=/m/ and I will blend (cri) together with (m). So the word is crime. This strategy of covering up the letters and starting with the vowel sound will help us figure out tricky words more easily. Therefore, next time you come across a word that does not look familiar to you, you can use you cover-up critter. The students should already have cover-up critters or should make one.

3. Say: Some ways we can become more fluent is by rereading to become more familiar with words. I am going to read this sentence two times and I want you to judge which one sounds the best. Write, I went to her house the other day, on the board. 1st time, say: I www-eee-nnn-ttt, wnet, to hhh-eee-rrr, her, hhh,ooouuu,sss,e, house, the ooo-ttthhh-eee-rrr, oter, ddd-aaa-yy, day. Then ask: Was that easy for me to read? No, it wasn’t I need to reread to get better with those words. 2nd time: I w-ent to her h-ou-ssse the oth-er day. Ask: How did that sound? Right, the 2nd is easier to understand when you are reading more fluently. The first time I read I was not fluent and it was hard to understand because all the words were chopped up but by rereading. I was able to read the more fluently. The first time I read I was not fluent and it was hard to understand because all the words were chopper up but by rereading I was able to read the sentences smoother and it made more sense.

4. Say: I am going to give you some sentences. Get with your partner and practice reading them and see how you get better when you reread. The first two times you whisper read and then the third time you and your partner can read aloud together. Give students copies of the sentences. Walk around and listen as students read to see if they are reading to see if they are improving.

5. Say: Did you see how you get better as you read the same thing? We are going to do a couple of one minute reads using Bass Lake and you will chart your progress so you can see how it helps to reread.

6. You are going to get with your partner. One person will be the reader. The timer will time for one minute while the reader whisper reads or reads silently as many words as they can. You will put highlight tape on the last word you read. You will do this three times. Use a different color tape each time you read. The timer will count the words from each read and the reader will write them on his sheet and put his monkey in the appropriate range. The timer will also observe the reader and fill out a checklist after each read. You will then switch spots. After you both go you can finish the book together. Give a book talk: Bass Lake is about two girls who go on a hiking trip to Bass Lake at Deer cove. On their way to Deer Cove they are both camping and they see a light in the top of the trees. To their surprise it’s not a light at all. It is a forest fire and it is heading towards their friend’s house. So do you think the two girls, Gail and Sue will be able to get to their friend’s house before the fire does. Let’s read on to find out!

7. Assessment: After students have to read each other, have them individually come up to your desk and read two one minute reads. Ask them questions about what they just read to see if they are gaining comprehension skills as well. Make notes for each student on what you noticed they did as they read and if they understood or were just reading. Also collect their graphs they made to see if improvements were made.



Alli Smalley. Smooth Sailing.

Anne Larkin Oaks. Read, REad, READ… Faster, FASter, FASTER!

Bass Lake. Matt Sims: A Sound Out Chapter Book. 1999.