Quiet as a Mouse!

Growing Independence and Fluency

Morgan Barrow


Rationale: In order for children to become independent and fluent readers they need to learn how to read silently.  Being able to read silently will allow students to increase their reading speed and comprehension without disturbing others.  In this lesson students will learn how to read silently by reading and rereading decodable texts which will improve their independence and fluency.



Is Jo Home? (a copy for each pair of student) Cushman, Shelia & Kornblum, Rona.  Is Jo Home? Carson, Educational Insights, 1990, p. 9.

Pencil for each student

Silent reading checklist for each student

______ Reads aloud

______ Reads in a whisper

______ Reads while moving lips

______ Reads silently



1. Introduce the lesson: "Today we are going to learn how to read silently.  When we can read silently, we can read and reread books more often which will help us become more fluent readers!  We're going to read so quietly that we're going to be as quiet as a mouse!" 

2. Review: "Before we get started let's review cross checking.  Whenever we finish reading a sentence we need to think and see if it makes sense."  Write the sentence: 'I will bake a cake for Pat' on the board.  Say: "'I will baaaat a caaaakkke for Paaat.'  Now I am going to think to myself, does that sentence make sense?  I do not think it does because you do not bat a cake. Oh!  You bake a cake!  Let's reread the sentence:  'I will bake a cake for Pat.' Great!"

3. Model the steps to reading silently.  Write this sentence on the board, 'The dog dug a hole for his bone.'  "First I am going to read this sentence out loud, 'The doooog duuuug a hooooole for hiiis boooone.'"

4. "Now that I understand what this sentence is saying I am going to read it again, but I am going to whisper it, 'The dooog duuug a hooole for his booone.'"

5. "This time I am going to mouth the words, but no sound is going to come out, (the doog duug a hoole for his boone.)"

6. "Now I am going to think about the words in my head and not move my lips at all, (the dog dug a hole for his bone.) I can ask myself, 'What did the dog do with his bone? Oh, he dug a hole!'"

7. "Let's look at a different sentence together."  Write, 'Dan and Bob went to the lake' on the board.  "Let's all read the sentence out loud, 'Daaaan and Boooob weeent to the laaaake.'  Great job!"

8. "Next we're going to read the sentence, but we are going to read it in a whisper. 'Daaan and Booob weeent to the laaake.'  Good job!  I could barely hear y'all that time, but I know we can be even quieter."

9. "This time I want everyone to just move their lips as they read the sentence. 'Daan and Bob went to the laake.'"

10. "Now we are all going to read the sentence silently. (Dan and Bob went to the lake.)  Great job!  Everyone was as quiet as a mouse!  Where did Dan and Bob go?  That's right, they went to the lake!

11. "This time we are all going to read a new sentence silently.  Remember to cross check to make sure that the sentence makes sense."  Write, 'The cat is in a tree' on the board, and give enough time for students to read it.  "Where is the cat?  He's in a tree. Great silent reading!"

12. "Now we are all going to read the book Is Jo Home? This book is about a dog that is so excited to get to play with Jo!  The dog starts to think of all the fun things that she can do with Jo, but we will have to read the book to see if Jo is at home.  I want you to find a partner, and y'all will take turns reading.  Use the checklists I have handed out to you to tell your partner how well they did."

13. After everyone has finished their partner assessments I will ask a few questions to check for comprehension.  "Can you tell me one of the fun activities that Jo and the dog will do?  What will they do in the cove?  Is Jo home?"




Yow, Caroline. I Heard a Cricket! http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/projects/yowgf.html


Cushman, Shelia & Kornblum, Rona.  Is Jo Home? Carson, Educational Insights, 1990, p. 9.


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