Flowing Through Fluency

Growing Independence and Fluency Lesson Design

Kendra Haywood





Rationale: Students read slowly when they first begin to read.   As word recognition becomes quicker and more automatic to children, they begin to read faster by decoding.  Fluency focuses on children comprehending instead of struggling to decode words.  When children begin to read fluently, they begin to read faster, show expressive reading, become involuntary readers, and reading silently.  Reading and rereading decodable words in a text helps children be able become better fluent readers.  This lesson will allow children to become better fluent readers.  The students will gain fluency through repeated readings and one-minute reads. 



One Minute Read Chart:

Name:______________________  Date:____________

1st minute: ______

2nd minute: ______

3rd minute: ______

 (Fluency Rubric Chart)




1. I will begin the lesson by explaining the difference between a beginner reader and a fluent reader.  I will first ask the class what they think a fluent reader does.  I will explain to them that fluent readers read fast and can read with expression.  I will then write on the board the following sentence: 'I like to play outside.' "Now class, how do you think a beginner reader will read this sentence?  That's right.  A beginner reader might have trouble reading some words and may take a long time to read the sentence.  A beginner reader might sound like this: "I llliikkkee tooo ppplllaaayyy oouuttssiiiiddde."  They might even sound like this: "I llliiikkkeee like to ppplllaaayyy play ooouuutttsssiiidddeee outside", where they stumble over a lot of words that they do not recognize.  Another way a beginner reader may say this sentence is:  "I like to play outside", where they are decoding the words rather fast, but are not reading the sentence with expression.  A fluent reader on the other hand can read fast and read with expression.  A fluent reader might say this sentence like this: "I like to play outside!"  We are going to practice today on becoming a fluent reader.  Reading books over and over is a good way to become fluent readers.  Let's begin practicing!"


2. I will review with the class how to use cover-ups to help them decode words.  "How do we use our cover-up critter to help us decode a word that we might not know? (I will write the word 'flash' on the board).  That's right.  We start with the vowel which is /a/.  We cover up everything after the letter a including the letter a.  We will look at the letters before the letter a, which is fl.  We will blend these two letters together to get fl.  Then we add the letter a, fla.  Then we cover the first 3 letters up and blend the last letters together, and say sh.  Then we start from the beginning and put everything together. /f/ /l/ /a/ /sh/. 


3. "When becoming fluent readers, we cannot just focus on reading fast.  When we read a sentence, we make sure we crosscheck to make sure the sentence makes sense that we are reading.  (I will write this sentence on the board: He sleeps on the bed.) For example, if I read this sentence like this: "He sleeps on the bead", then I could use my crosschecking skills to determine if the sentence makes sense.  I know that you don't sleep on a bead, you sleep on a bed.  I know now that my reading doesn't make sense, so I will reread the sentence again correctly like this: "He sleeps on the bed." 


4. I will pass out to the class the book, Hot at the Dam.  I will also hand out the One Minute Record Chart and the Fluency Recorder Chart. I will give a book talk from the book, Hot at the Dam. "Pam and Pat run to the dam. Pam and Pat's friends hop to the dam. When they get to the dam, they are so hot! What should they do? Well, you will have to read the book to find out!"


5. I will partner the students up with partners that are close to his/her reading level.  One partner will be the "reader" while the other partner will be the "recorder".  The reader will read the book and will read as many words as they can in one minute.  The "recorder" will have a stopwatch and will tell the "reader" when to begin reading and when to stop.  The "recorder" will also record how many words the "reader" read in one minute on the One Minute Record Chart.  The reader will get to read three times.  The reader will be able to move the basketball player up towards the basketball goal each chance depending on how many words they got right.  The partners will then switch rolls and they will do the same thing with the other partner and the process will be repeated.


6. I will allow the students to read over the book one time.  After both students have read over the book at least one time, I will have them fill out a Fluency Rubric of their partners.  The "recorder" will allow the "reader" to read over the book and after the "reader" is done reading the entire book, they will fill out the first part of the fluency rubric.  The partners will switch positions and the process will be repeated. 


7. After each student has read the book 2 times, I will have them repeat the process again and read the book for the third time.  The partners will fill out the second part of the fluency rubrics.  I will have an open discussion with the class on how they thought they improved from reading the book more than once with their partner. 


8. I will collect all of the One Minute Record Charts and the Fluency Rubrics.  I will assess the students understanding by having each student read a passage, of about 60 words, to me in the reading center out of the book, Hot at the Dam. I will check the students' fluency by using a one minute record sheet.  I will check the students' comprehension by asking them questions about the reading.  While the one student is doing a one minute read with me, the rest of the class will be practicing their fluency by reading a book while sitting at their desk.


Angel, Veronica. Hot at the Dam

Cadrette, Mallory. (2007). A Fluency Reading Design. Auburn University Reding

Genie Website: retrieved March 31, 2008. http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/encounters/cadrettegf.html

Murray, Bruce. Developing Reading Fluency. Auburn University Reading Genie

Website: retrieved March 31, 2008. http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/fluency.html

Rosko, Natasha. (2007). A Fluency Reading Design.  Auburn

University Reading Genie Website: retrieved March 31, 2008. http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/encounters/roskogf.html

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