Hop Aboard the

Fluency Train!
Casey Gaines


The objective of this lesson is to build fluency in order to comprehend texts. Fluency is important when transitioning from decoding words to recognizing words automatically. Reading fluent is a skill that can be learned through practice.  Repeated readings are essential in helping to become a fluent reader. The more fluent a reader is the more they are motivated and enjoy reading more.  This lesson will focus on cross checking, mentally marking, and repeated reading to improve fluency skills.


·        Stop watch for each student

·        Fluency checklist

·        Fluency self-evaluation

·        Fluency partner practice checklist

·        Copies of Junie B. Jones: First Grader at Last!


·        "Today we are going to learn how to be faster, more accurate readers who read with expression.  Then, we are going to keep practicing what we learn.  When you are able to read faster and with expression it helps the reading to make more sense to us and we can know what we have read once we are done, and we can know what the whole story means."

·        "We are going to practice fluency skills, and I am going to write two sentences on the board and then I will read the first one aloud, modeling to you how to cross check and decode the sentence to re read it.  Once we have gone over the first sentence I will have you practice with a partner for the second sentence."

          "Jane is going to have a chocolate cake for her birthday."

Jjj-aaaa-nn-eh, janeh, oh the e makes the a say its name, Jane is going to hh-aaa-vv, hayve?, a ch-o-c-o-llll-aaa-tt, cho-co-lat, chocolat, oh! Chocolate, I love chocolate, c-ayy-kk-e, cake, for huh--ehh-rrr, her bbb-iirrr-th, birth-dd-aaay, birthday. Jane is going to hayve chocolate cake for her birthday, Oh! Jane is going to HAV chocolate cake for her birthday. 


"Now I want you all to pair with the person sitting next to you and practice decoding, cross checking, and re reading this sentence for fluency.

"My dog made a splash in the water"


·        "Did you all notice that when I was reading the first sentence aloud to the class I reminded myself of some phoneme rules, and when I got stuck on a word I finished the sentence and went back to re read it to see how it fit.  To figure out if the sentence makes sense it is important to go back and re read the sentence to make sure that all of the words are correct, when I read "Hayve" with the long /a/ I knew that it should be pronounced /h//a//v/. This strategy is called cross checking and I want all of you to be using this in your fluency practice."

·        "Now we are going to practice fluency skills by reading together "Junie B. Jones: First Grader at Last".  Let's read the first two sentences together and practice out cross checking.  (I will walk around and listen to them re read the first two sentences aloud).  Then after we have practices as a class I will give them a booktalk before they read any further:

          Junie B. Jones is starting a new school year, and everything is different for her.  She has a new class, a new teacher, and even some new friends.  She also has a new problem…she might have to get glasses! Lets read to find out if Junie B. can convince her parents that her eyes are just fine the way they are or if she will have to get glasses.

·        Before sending them to read with a partner I will have the steps posted on the board with instructions: "Everyone get with your reading partner from earlier and go to your assigned spots.  I need one of you to come and get a copy of Junie B. Jones for you and your partner, two self evaluation sheets, two partner checklists, and two "What did I read?"

·        "Together you will count and see how many words are in the first chapter, and when you are done counting I want you to raise your hand so that I can make sure the number you have is correct.  Once I have approved your number I want you to write it on your sheet of paper." (show them which sheet)

·        "You and your partner are going to take turns reading chapter one in the book aloud to one another three times each.  While one partner reads, the other partner is going to use the stop watch and time them. " we will begin with partner A reading first".  Remember to pay attention to the mistakes that your partner makes, and I want you to make a tally mark for each mistake." (Model to them how to do the tally marks on the board). And then fill out a "Self Evaluation" worksheet.

·        After you have each read and have your tally marks,  I want you to do a subtraction problem for the total number of words minus the number of tallies to get the number of correct words. (show on the board what the problem will look like).  x 3 to make sure the number of correct words increases.

·        "Then you are going to write down the number of words read and the time that it took them to read them all.  Do that three times." (fluency rate = words read x 60/total seconds)

Reading Rate_________







Less than 50

Wpm              1     2    3


·        Then I want you to take the progress form and answer the two questions on there to tell me which reading had the fewest errors and which one was the fastest time.

·        Once each partner has completed the evaluations," I want you both to complete the comprehension sheets at the front of the room, called "What did I read?"



        The assessments will be the completed fluency tests from each partner that shows improvement, and the completed comprehension worksheet.  Graph the students speeds so that they can see how they are improving as time goes on.


Student Name:


Evidence shown for reading three times


Responded to comprehension questions


Improved fluency


Improved accuracy


Completed Partner Progress form








Junie B. Jones: First Grader at lastà http://www.scholastic.com/teachers/book/junie-b-first-grader-last


Train picture à https://www.google.com/search?q=cartoon+train&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=w9NtUquxEozqkQeJ8oBY&ved=0CAcQ_AUoAQ&biw=673&bih=646#facrc=_&imgdii=_&imgrc=2T-K3VlgsC-7rM%3A%3BFdg9JMKNdSGeUM%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fus.123rf.com%252F400wm%252F400%252F400%252Frastudio%252Frastudio1201%252Frastudio120100192%252F12137188-cartoon-train.jpg%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fwww.123rf.com%252Fphoto_12137188_cartoon-train.html%3B1200%3B900


EL design inspiration  à Heather Henley  



Casey Piper



Self Evaluation checklist



Train Graph for reading fluency improvements

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