The Frenzy of a Fluent Reader

Rebekah Aldridge

Growing Independence and Fluency Lesson Plan


Fluency could possibly the key ingredient to reading. It allows students to fully understand what they are reading. It pulls decoding and understanding together. It allows students to put personality into their reading, thus letting them enjoy reading more. To fully achieve fluency, students must be allowed to read and reread stories. This helps them grow in word knowledge and self esteem because these are achievable good experiences with reading. This lesson will allow students to grow into fluent readers. It will show them how to read fluently and expressively.


1.      Fuzz and the Buzz for the entire class

2.      Set of stopwatches

3.      Pencils

4.      One minute read charts

5.      Progress chart for each student (a tree with a giraffe reaching for leaves, the tree has numbers along the side to signify how many words per minute the student read, the giraffes neck extends to reach the very top branches. The higher the neck grows the more words a minute the student reads.)

One minute read chart:

Name: ____________________________                            Date: ____________


First reading time: _____________

Second reading time: _____________

Third reading time: ___________


1.) Introduce the lesson: Good morning everyone! Today we are going to talk about the difference between fluent readers and beginning readers. Then we are going to practice fluent reading, because everyone wants to read fluently. First, fluent readers read fast and automatically. They also read with expression to make what they are reading more interesting. Let me show you how to the difference between beginning reading and fluent reading. (Write this sentence up on the board: The zebra at the zoo was very sweet.) A beginning reader might read this sentence like this. Thee zzzebraa aat the zzzooo wwwaass vveryy sssweet. Then the student might read the sentence again, but it would probably be bland with not emphasis on words to make it interesting. However, a fluent reader would read it well and with expression like this: The zebra at the zoo was very sweet! The only way to become fluent is to practice, practice, and then practice some more. Reading a book several times helps you become fluent because there are no surprises. Now let's go practice being fluent readers!

2.) Give the students a reminder about decoding. Now remember how we decode words. What do we do first? That's right, you decode the vowel first. Then we add the consonants onto the word like this: For the word Buzz, begin with the short u. It says /u/, then we add /b/. Now we bring it all together with the /z/ and say Buzz.

3.) Remind the students to also cross check. Remember students that we must crosscheck. Fluent readers do not just read fast, but they look for continuity in a story. For example, look on page three in Fuzz and the Buzz. If I read: Fuzz runs and runs. The cab tugs at nuts. Does that make sense? No, it doesn't, but "The cub tugs at nuts." does. So, always remember to cross check.

4.) Now I am going to split you up into partners. Each pair will get two copies of Buzz and the Fuzz. Everyone will also get a fluency chart and one minute read chart. Now give the book talk.  Fuzz is a bear and loves to run in the hot sun. He plays and tugs on trees, but uh-oh here comes a buzz. Keep reading to find out what happens with buzz and Fuzz.

5.)  Show students how to take turns reading.  Each person who isn't reading should be recording how many words their partner has read. The partner who isn't reading should tell the reader when to begin and stop reading. The person who isn't reading should make notes on the one minute read chart and allow the other student to move his or her giraffe. Then everyone will switch.

6.) Allow the student's time to do all three readings. Make sure that they all have time to complete their charts. Remind the students to also give compliments and suggestions after the readings have been finished.

7.) I will then collect the one minute reading charts and look at the times for each child. For assessment, I will have my own session with the students and listen to their fluency and expression. I will also have them retell the story and see how many facts they can retell. To receive one hundred percent, the students should be able to remember eight facts. That makes one fact per page.


Fuzz and the Buzz, Educational Insights: Carson, CA, 1990

Cadrette, Mallory. Super Speedy Readers!!

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