Speeder Readers!

Growing Fluency

Colleen Wanner

Rationale: In order for children to become expert readers, they have to develop fluency in their reading.  Fluency involves reading faster, smoother, and with more expression.  One of the first steps in developing fluency is learning to recognize words effortlessly and automatically.  This lesson will help students to begin to read faster through repeated readings and one-minute reads.


-White board and marker

-Jane and Babe  (copies for every two students)

- Fluency check lists for each child (List that has a space for Remembered More Words, Read faster, Read smoother, Read With Expression)

-Speed Record Sheets for each child (has a chart with 3 blank spaces to record how many words the student read during each 1-minute time period)

- Stopwatches (enough for every two children to have one)



1.Begin by saying, "We have been working on skills to help us become stronger readers.  Today, we are going to talk about something called fluency.  Fluency is when we can read words faster and smoother, so that it makes the stories that we read more interesting."

2."Let's start by talking about some of the things that we have learned that we can do if we get stuck on a word.  Who can tell me what the first thing we do is?  That's right!  We use cover-ups." (List #1 on the board and write Use cover-ups.)  "So if I had this word (best) in my story, and I couldn't figure it out, I would cover up all of the letters except for the vowel. (Then model the strategy, using the word 'best') Do we all remember that this is what the cover-up strategy is?  Okay, so that's the first thing we can try if we can't figure out a word."

3."Who can tell me what the other strategy that we can try is, if we can't figure a word out using cover-ups?  That's right!  We can use cross-checking!"  (Write #2 on the board, and write Use Crosschecking.)  "Who remembers what cross-checking is?"  (Write the sentence 'The boys play outside.' on the board.)  Model to students how they should cross check. This is how we cross-check.  We go back and read the sentence again to make sure it makes sense to us."

4."Now, we are going to talk about how to read fluently."  (Write the sentence 'He throws the ball' on the board.)  "I am going to read this sentence two times for you.  I want you to all listen closely and pay attention to how I read. (Read sentence, stressing each phoneme.)  Now I'll read it again. Which time sounded better?  That's right…the second time sounded a lot better!  Why?  Yes, because I read it a lot faster!  So you could understand what I read a lot better…couldn't you?"

5."So we can see that we understand what we read a lot better when we can read faster.  I am going to give everyone a book to read, called Jane and Babe.  This book is about a lion name Babe and his trainer named Jane.  One day, Jane gets into the cage with Babe and tries to wake him up.  What do you think will happen when she tries to wake up a lion?!  You'll have to read to find out!"  (Pass out copies of Jane and Babe to every two students.)

6. "Before we start reading this great story, look at the pieces of paper on your desks.  This is a fluency check-list.  We are going to take turns reading in partners.  You are each going o read the story to your partner 3 times.  On the 2nd and 3rd time that your partner reads to you, I want you to mark the boxes to show what your friend has improved on since the time that he or she read to you before.  You are going to mark if he or she remembers more words, reads faster, reads smoother, or reads with more expression.  Remember, we are only going to say nice things to our partners about how their reading has improved."

7. "What do you think is going to happen each time we read the story to our partners?  Do you think we will start to be able to read it faster?  I bet you're right!  Let's see.  Okay, everyone start reading to your partner.  Don't forget to read it three times."

8. For assessment, each child will independently read to the teacher one at a time. They will read for a minute and the teacher will see how many words the child can read in Jane and Babe.



Bright, Amy. Summer 2004. Home Run Reader http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/begin/brightgf.html


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