Speedy Reading


Growing Independence and Fluency

Jenny Duvall

Rationale:  Fluent reading is defined as reading in which words are recognized automatically (Developing Reading Fluency).  When children learn to read fluently, their entire reading experience is enriched.  Automatic word recognition, more expressive reading, and faster reading are all products of fluent reading.  Although fluent reading is an ultimate goal, most beginning readers do not read fluently and is often times a word by word struggle.  Coupled with constant encouragement, the fluency formula is key in building correct reading habits.  In the formula, students read and re-read decodable words in connected text.  This lesson will assist students in constructing fluent reading by following the fluency formula and also by using the direct approach.  The direct approach refers to the modeling by the instructor and also requires practice of speed with timed readings.  In doing this, the selected text for the students will be decodable, not predictable. The goal in this lesson is speed-not accuracy.  By using a check sheet with a partner, each student will be building on specific skills and will enjoy racing against the clock.  It should be noted that for this lesson, the students should be at full alphabetic phase.


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Speed Record Sheet

Name:________________           Date:__________

1st time:______     

2nd time:______     

3rd time:______

Procedures:  1. 
Introduce the lesson by explaining that we are going to learn how to be fluent readers.  "Everyone in here can be a fluent reader!  All we have to do is practice.  I am going to show you a few things that we can all do to become faster and more fluent readers.  When we become fluent readers, we can understand what we read more easily.  One way to do this is to read the same text over and over again.  We are going to be working with partners today also.  I am going to give you a stop watch and check sheet so that you can see how you're reading has improved.

2.  For the review, the teacher will read a sentence to the class demonstrating a non-fluent reader, and then read it again using fluency.  "I am going to read a sentence to you as if I was a non fluent reader.  Thhheeee ccccaaaaaatttttt jjjjjuuuuummppeeddd iiinnnn thhhhee aaaaiiiirr.  Let's see-how did that sound? Did you notice how slow and choppy it was?  I can barely even remember what I read by the time I got to the last word! Now I am going to show you how a fluent reader would read-The cat jumped in the air.  See how well it flows?  Doesn't it make more sense now that you can understand the sentence? This is how we read when we become great readers because we read fast and smoothly.  I read with speed and accuracy because I knew the words and I paid attention and looked at the text as I read. 

3.  A short demonstration of how to use cover-ups is very helpful.  Writing a word on the overhead or marker board and then going through the steps of how to use a cover-up will allow the students to see how to do it.

4.  "Now class, it is your turn to practice becoming fluent and we will accomplish this by having partners and sentences that you will read 3 times."

5.  "This is called speed-reading.  We want to see how fast your time improves with each read aloud.  Whoever reads, the other person will time and see how fast the first read aloud takes, then the 2nd, and then the 3rd.  You should all improve greatly from your first read aloud to your 3rd because by that time, you are familiar with the words and can focus on saying them faster."

6.  While being able to read fast is important, it's not the only thing we want to accomplish with this lesson.  After you are finished with the speed-reading, I want the pairs to read to each other a decodable book (either Liz is Six or Bud the Sub).  With this activity, I want you to read it three times, like you did with the sentences, and see if you have made any other improvements besides becoming faster (did you remember more words, was your reading smoother, etc.).  The observer needs to fill out the fluency check list when their partner reads. 

7.  The students will read the selected books (each pair should have one copy of each book, and the student should choose what book they each want to read, if they have a preference).  We will stop when they have filled in all of the charts.  When they are finished, each student will talk to their partner to see how they did.

8.  I will take up the Speed Record Sheet and the Fluency Literacy Rubric and compare the first and last readings.  All of the students should have increased each time dramatically and have a better understanding of what fluency should sound like.  The class will also have a discussion about Liz is Six and Bud the Sub to make sure they comprehended the text correctly.


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