Speedy Jon Jones!
Rationale: The primary goal of reading instruction is for students to comprehend the text and read words rapidly and automatically. In order for children to become fluent readers, they must be able to read words in a smooth, fast manner and with expression. Rereading text is a means by which students will increase the number of words/minute they are reading, their speed, smoothness, and automaticity, and in turn, increase their fluency. Students will work in pairs reading, decoding, discussing, and rereading decodable books of their choice, but on the appropriate level.
Materials: Book talks on the following books: Is Jo Home? (This story is about a sweet little dog who wishes her best friend Jo was home. They do lots of fun things together. To figure out what things they do, you should read the rest of the story), What Will Seal Eat (Seal is looking for some food that he likes, but he can't seem to find anything that seals eat. If you want to see what he eats, you need to read the rest of the story), and James and the Good Day (James decides to have a really fun day when he wakes up one morning, but something bad happens. If you want to find out what happens, you need to read the story). See references for list of authors. Also, a variety of other decodable books for students to choose from, a stop watch, the sentence, I want to go to the beach for my birthday written on the board, and check sheets for partner readings, and pencils.
Procedure: 1. Today we are going to talk about the correct and incorrect ways to read a book. First I will read a book called What Will the Seal Eat? It's about a seal that is hungry but can't seem to find anything that seals eat. Do you suppose he will eventually find something? Let's see if he does. (Begin reading the first half of the book smoothly and with expression. Then read the second half slow, choppy and without expression) Ask the children a few questions about what they have learned thus far when you finish reading the first half of the book. (They may say seals don't eat beans, beets, beef, or peas) Then read the second half of the book and ask the children what they learned during the second reading. (They will have a hard time answering because the reading was so slow, choppy, and without expression that it made it hard to comprehend) Explain to the students that In order to comprehend what we read, we must become fluent readers and read with expression. We can do this by reading and rereading. For example: I want you to read the sentence on the board slow and without expression. (Write the sentence I want to go to Disneyland for my next birthday! on the board) Now read the sentence fast and with expression. Which one sounded better? (The second one.) Good job. And do you know why the second one sounded better? Because it was more like speaking to me instead of reading to me.
2. Before starting our reading, I would like for us to review what we do when we get stuck on a word. First, we take a shot by covering up part of the word to make it easier to sound out. If this doesn't work we read to the end of the sentence to see what would make sense. If you are still having trouble you would change your guess to fit the sentence. Can someone tell me what we do after we know the correct word? Read the sentence again. Right! Always reread the sentence from the beginning so you can get back into the meaning of the story. Very good class! Now let's read.
3. Class, before I let you pick out a book to read, I am going to give book talks. Now I want you to listen carefully to the book talks because you may want to choose one of these books to read. If you do not find these books to be interesting, you can choose a book from this stack here on the table. (Have the extra decodable books on a table) Give book talks on Is Jo Home? and James and the Good Day. A book talk on Is Jo Home? might go something like this: There is a sweet little dog that is hoping her friend Jo is home. She wants to do lots of fun things with Jo. To find out if Jo is home, and what fun things they will do, you need to read the book and find out. Now, can someone tell me how we go about selecting a book when we have not heard a book talk on it? Is it by the book's cover? No! You choose a book by reading a few passages from it or by reading the back of the book where it tells you what it is about. Also, remember the two finger test when choosing your book. If, while reading, there are more than two words on a page that you don't understand, the book will more than likely be too hard for you. Now I want each of you to choose a book to read.
4. Now that everyone has a book, I want you to find a spot in the room where you will be comfortable. I want you to read your book three times silently over the next fifteen minutes. If you finish reading three times before the fifteen minutes are up you may read the book again. As you read, try to think about putting more and more expression into your readings. This will enhance your reading fluency.
Assessment: (1 minute reads) Now we are going to play a game. Now that each of you has read your book at least three times, I am going to use a stopwatch to see how fast you can read during one minute. I want each of you to pick a partner. Your partner will be responsible for counting the words you read during the one minute and for completing a check sheet after each reading. Remember you can't skip a word. Practice cover-ups and rereading to understand a word. Now let's read. Start the stopwatch. (Remind them to read fast and with expression) Very good boys and girls. Now let's switch places. Your partner will read his/her book while you count words and fill out the check sheet. (Repeat the procedure three times) Now let's see who read the fastest, who read with the most expression, who read the most words, and who remembered more words.
The Reading Genie: http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/fluency.html
What Will Seal Eat? Carson, CA. Educational Insights 1990.
Is Jo Home? Carson, CA. Educational Insights. 1990.
James and the Good Day Carson, CA. Educational Insights. 1990.
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