Up, Up and Away with Fluency

hot air balloon
Growing Independence and Fluency

Courtney Nims

Rationale:
When trying to be a successful reader, it is important that you are able to read fluently.  One way to become a fluent reader is to read frequently and repeatedly reread things that you have already read.  Through repeated readings, readers can increase their fluency and build their confidence in their own reading abilities.  Fluent readers will eventually read with enthusiasm and excitement.  This in turn will make the experience more pleasurable for listeners.  Being a fluent reader also helps readers with comprehension and understanding of texts.  In this lesson I will use repeated one minute reads to help my students read faster to improve their fluency.
Materials:

-A stopwatch for every pair of students

-Class set of decodable books Red Gets Fed (Educational Insights)

-Fluency time sheets to mark student's scores as seen at bottom of page to turn into me

-Pencils

-Index Card

-A Progress Chart of the sky with number at desired increments.

-Hot Air Balloon to map progress on the progress chart.

Procedures:

1.  I will start the lesson by explaining to students what being a fluent readers means and why it is important that students are fluent readers.  "Students, today we are going to begin working on a new special skill for reading, called fluency.  This means that we can read a text easily and at an appropriate speed.  We also need to have excitement and enthusiasm in our voice so that others can enjoy what we read.  Being fluent is important because it helps you become a better reader."

Review- " We are going to review how when we miss a word in a sentence we need to go first finish the sentence and then go back to the beginning and read the entire sentence over again.

2. Tell students we are going be working to become fluent readers by practicing timed repeated readings.  "Students, today we will practice repeated readings.  This means we will read a passage for one minute.  We will stop after one minute and see how many words you have read.  We will do this several times and count the words each time.  It is important to remember what you read.  Reading quickly is important, but understanding what you are reading is also important as well." 

3. I will model how to reread a passage from a text.  "Students I am going to read a sentence to you several different days.  When I have finished, I want you to tell me which way sounds the best."  (Read text slow and choppy the first time.  The second time read in steadily but with out expression.  Finally read the sentence smoothly and with expression.). Ask, "Can you tell how my reading got better each time I read the text?  You see each time I read the text I got better.  That means each time you read a text you will get better.  That is how rereading things make us better readers.  Which one sounded best, the first, second, or third way I read?"  Then have students practice becoming more fluent readers.

 4. Provide each pair of students with the decodable book Red Gets Fed, a stopwatch, a progress board, and a fluency time sheet.  "Let us try rereading texts to become more fluent in our pairs with a book of our own!"  Give book-talk to get students interested in the book they will be reading.  "Red is a dog that wants to be fed to he goes and tries to wake up everyone in the house so that they will feed him. To find out what happens to Red and whether or not he ever gets fed. . . you will have to read the rest of the book Red Gets Fed."  "As you read the book, your partner is going to time you for one minute.  Read as many words as you can and stop when your partner says stop.  If you see a word that you do not know, try to sound it out and then read the rest of the sentence.  If you mess up and correct a word, make sure you go back and read the entire sentence like we have done in the past.  If you still can not figure out the word ask for help.  After the minute is completed, place the index card where you stopped reading.  Then go back to where you started and count all of the words that you read during your reading.  Write that number in the first blank of your fluency time sheet. Then swap with your partner.  After your partner has completed his or her turn then swap back.  Complete this three times recording each of your outcomes."

 5. "After you have completed your readings and filled in the chart, talk with your partner to see how you did. If you have extra time, discuss with your partner some of the things that happened in the story."

Assessment:  To assess my students I will call each student up to me to do a final one minute read.  This will individually assess reading fluency. I will also collect the charts from when the students did readings in pairs to assess how they worked with others in the class.

References:

Murray, Bruce.http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/fluency.html

Whitman, Kristen.Quick, Let's Read Fast!!!.

http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/encounters/whitmangf.html

Cushman, S (1990). Red Gets Fed. Carson, CA: Educational Insights

 

Fluency Time Sheet:

 

 Name: _______________________                                       

 

Date:________________________

 

Title of Book: _________________

 

1st timed reading: ______________

 

2nd timed reading:______________

 

3rd timed reading:______________

 

Name of stopwatch holder: ________________________

 

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