Leap into Faster Reading

Samantha McClendon

Rationale: As students decode and start to read words automatically, they become more fluent. Fluent readers enjoy reading because they no longer struggle to read words. Fluent readers gain independence in reading through practice and repeated readings. This lesson will help readers practice to become fluent.


  1. Introduce the lesson by explaining to the students what we will be doing today. Today boys and girls we are going to practice reading faster and also reading for meaning. Quick reading and being able to comprehend the reading is called fluency. Fluent readers are no longer challenged by reading and begin to enjoy it. I know each one of you will enjoy to read the more we practice your fluency.
  2. Does everyone remember what cross-checking is? Sometimes while we are reading we read a word wrong. Cross-checking is when the other words in the sentence help us know that we read the word wrong. For example, 'We threw the bell back and forth.' Does that sentence make sense? Let's look at it again: you don't throw a bell. You throw a ball. Ok I just mixed up ball with bell. By cross-checking I knew that the sentence did not make sense and I fixed the problem.
  3. To practice reading and become more fluent we are going to read a book three times to see if we get faster. First we are going to read a few sentence strips. Model reading the first sentence strip, What-will-the-seal-eat? Was that  sentence very interesting? No it was not. Let's try it again, 'What will the seal eat?' I am getting faster and smoother at reading this sentence because I have practiced it twice. Now I'm going to read it a third time, 'What will the seal eat?' See how much better that sentence sounded the more I practiced?
  4. Now have the students break up into pairs and read the practice strips to each other. Have them read at least two different strips three times apiece.
  5. Please stay in your groups and find a quiet corner for you and your partner to practice reading fluently to each other. Give each student a reading checklist and each group a stopwatch. 
  6. Explain to the students the process. One of you will be the reader, while the other one will be the recorder. The reader should begin at the beginning of the book and read for one minute. The recorder should time the one minute and  when the stopwatch is at one minute tell the reader to stop. The reader will point to the word he or she stopped on and the recorder will begin to count the amount of words he or she read and then record that number in the first blank of the reading checklist. After the reader read three times and the amount of words read are recorded, switch places.
  7. Assess the students by walking around and observing their work. At the end of the lesson have the students pass in their reading checklist and review them to make sure they are improving and doing their work.


Faster Fluency. Allison Bagwell. http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/encounters/bagwellgf.html

Murray, Bruce. Developing Reading Fluency.

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