3, 2, 1 Take Off with Reading!


By: Caroline Trefethen


Rationale: Children need to have fluency in reading that is reading fast, accurate, and with expression. Children must have fluency in order to read faster while comprehending the material. In order for children to become fluent readers, they must read and re-read decodable words in connected text. Reading fluency increase children's enjoyment of reading and helps them read voluntarily. This lesson will help increase ready fluency through three one-minute reads.

- Timer (one for the teacher)             
- Partner reading check sheets (one for each child- Example from Reading Genie)

- Jane and Babe for the partners and you.

-Pencils for the students

-Model book


1. I will introduce the lesson by talking to the students about reading and tell them that reading is something that takes a lot of practice.  "Today we are going to practice reading faster and smoother." I will talk to students about what it means to be a "fluent" reader.  Fluent readers are able to read quickly, smoothly and with expression.  "This might seem like a lot, but once you are a fluent reader you will be able to enjoy stories a lot more!  Today we are going to read the story Jane and Babe.  Each of you will be reading the story three times so that we can get lots of practice reading quickly and smoothly.  There might be some words in the story that you don't know, but that is ok."  Students can practice using the cover-up strategy or try reading the rest of the sentence to see if they can figure out the missing word.  Model cover-up strategy for students to refresh them

2. Use a book to model what a bad fluent reader and a good fluent reader sounds like so your children understand. "The first time I read this book I was very slow and I didn't know some of the words. It sounded like this, "To, to-day I a,a-m, am sssi, siiik, sick. It was very hard to understand what the story was about since it took me so long to get through it. I decided to read the book again because it is about something that is really exciting to me. Can you guess what happened!? The second time I read it I read the words I had trouble with the first time, I read the book faster, and I knew what the story was about! So today we are going to try reading and re-reading your books so you guys become fluent readers!

3. Give a book talk for the book, Jane and Babe. Jane is a zoo keeper and her favorite animal is Babe. Babe is a very sleepy lion. Jane wants to play with Babe, but he will not wake up. Jane tries and tries to wake up Babe. Will Jane ever get Babe to wake up and play? We will have to read to find out!" Pass out one book to each group, check sheets and pencils for each child.

4. Have the students sit with their partner. Now pass partner check lists and the book Jane and Babe. Each student gets one. "Alright, I need everyone's attention. Does everyone have a book and a check sheet? Ok, I want each group to take turns reading your book to your partner. The first time you read it, I want your partner to just listen. Then the second time they read, I want the listener to fill in the check sheet. Model fluent and non-fluent reading once again. Model smooth and choppy reading and model how to read with expression. On the check sheet, tell the children to look and listen for: "Did my partner remember more words? Did they read faster? Did they read smoother? Lastly, did they read with expression? If they did put a check right here (model where to write the check mark). Then use the feedback from your partner the third time you read. Then, switch. The reader will become the listener and the listener will become the reader. Does everyone understand? I will be walking around listening if anyone is confused or needs some help.

6. Ok, you are going to take turns reading and listening again. When I say "3, 2, 1 Take off with your reading" the reader will read as fast as they can for one minute. I will use this stop watch to tell everyone when to start and stop! After your partner is done reading, record on the check sheet how many words your partner read in a minute. Model a one-minute read and model how to write the number of words they read. You will repeat the same process two more times. When we have finished three one-minute reads with the first reader then your partner will do three, one minute reads. Does everyone understand what they are going to do? Ok, everyone ready to read? 3, 2, 1 Take off with your reading!

7. To assess your students, make a graph of each student of where they fell in after the three, one minute reads. Every child reads the same book so you can tell what reading level each child is on. 


Churchwell, Hope: Ready, Set, Go! Fluency, Here we come! http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/navig/churchwellgf.html

Murray, Bruce. The Reading Genie, Developing Reading Fluency. http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/fluency.html

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