Crosschecking Crocodiles

Holly Cartwright

Growing Fluency Design

Rationale:  For children to become successful readers it is important that they practice fluent reading.  By reading fluently children can recognize words automatically, accurately, and at a steady pace.  This is helpful because students should be spending their reading time comprehending the text rather than decoding individual words.  An important strategy that students must use is crosschecking.  By using crosschecking students can make sure that what they are reading is understood.  When students use crosschecking for understanding they are a step closer to fluent reading. 


 Book: Kids and Pets at Camp, By Geri Murray, 2006

Copies of Decodable book one for each child and teacher

Copies of reading passage one for teacher and laminated one for student

Paper and pencil so teacher can keep running record

Sheet to record amount of time it takes student to read the passage



1.  "Today we are going to learn about a helpful instrument that will help us become better readers! This tool is going to help us read faster when we read books and help us understand the stories we read! When we are able to read faster we can understand what our story is all about. That can make reading more fun!"

2. Crosschecking is an effective tool for students to read words that may be unfamiliar to them. "Now boys and girls when we come across a word we do not know and we cannot make sense of a sentence we use a word called crosschecking. I am going to read you guys a sentence and show you how crosschecking makes it easier for me to understand what I am reading.  I like to go swimming in the pole in the summertime. Wait a minute, that doesn't make sense.  You can't swim in a pole.  But I can swim in a pool.  Let's try that. I like to go swimming in the pool in the summertime. Ahh! Much better! It makes sense because you can't swim in a pole, but you definitely can in a pool."

3. Give the students an opportunity to try. "Now, I want to try and crosscheck this sentence that I will read.  Raise your hand when you think you know which word should be in the sentence. My favorite fool is a peach." Give the class some wait time so that they can use crosschecking to figure out that the sentence should say MY FAVORITE FOOD IS A PEACH.  Once they give their response ask them to explain why they changed the word. 

4.  Pass out copies of decodable book.  "Now I want to you to follow along as I read."  Read the passage pretending to read slowly, missing words, skipping punctuation, etc. Example: "Jan went to a comp. Wait that doesn't make sense. Maybe I should read it again.  This time I will crosscheck as I read.  Follow along with me." Have the students re-read the passage using crosschecking as I read.

5. Go over the crosschecking poster ( see attachment) with the children having them look listen and think by having them do the motions of looking (Pointing to eyes), listening (Cupping hands around ears) and Thinking (Pointing to brain). This will help the children remember the process of crosschecking and what the steps are in order.

6. Now, allow students to practice individual reading.  "Now, let's practice our new skill.  Remember to crosscheck and to read fluently so that we can all become better readers! Today we are going to read Kids and Pets at Camp. This story is all about kids at camp and all the things they do with their pets! Let's get our reading buddy and read this book in partners. Take turns reading with each other and remember your crosschecking rules if you get stuck! Raise your hand if you have any questions.

7. Assessment: Have students come up one at a time and read a page aloud to you.  Check their reading for fluency, accuracy, and crosschecking. It is important that the teacher keep a running record of each student's progress. The teacher should also keep track of how much time it takes for the student to read the passage and record the words per minute using the equation (words X 60)/# of seconds.


Crosschecking Poster:

Kids and Pets at Camp by Geri Murray, Reading Genie.

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