Ready to Read: A Fluency Design Lesson
By: Kelsey Hendrix
One way that students can become fluent readers is to do repeated readings; which means they read the same books over and over. By re-reading the same story, students are able to go back over words they have struggled with during previous times of reading the given story. It can also help build fluency, comprehension skills, and confidence in reading! This lesson is designed to help students with these areas of fluency. This design will help students by providing checklists to note miscues, time, and expression of reading. Students will improve their fluency by doing the repeated readings in this lesson. Moving the racecar will help them to monitor their progress throughout the lesson.
1. "Today we are going to look at one book and see how efficiently and accurately we can read it. I'm going to monitor your progress by moving this racecar around the track. Every time your reading improves, the car will move around the track towards the finish line. Once it's reached the finish line, you've met your goals! It is important to be a fluent reader and to works towards increasing your fluency! Together we can do it!"
2. "First, I'm going to read Caps for Sale; this story is about a man who wants to sell hats. However, he falls asleep and some monkeys start to mess with him and his hats. Will he be able to find his hats?" Read one page of the story while modeling poor fluency and be sure to run through periods, have a lack of expression, making reading errors, but model cross-checking as well. Get the students to record your mistakes and how long it took you to read with stopwatches. Next read the page of the story again, but this time with the following: appropriate expression, acknowledging periods, and a good pace for demonstrating fluency. Show how the racecar moves across the track (once for every difference in the number of mistakes made from the first reading to the second, and then again with the third, should finish on the finish line).
3. "Next you will be reading a book about a pig who has a birthday party. The pig sends out invitations to his friends, however there is one animal who is wanting to cause trouble at his party. Do you think Iggy's party will turn out well?" let the students work in pairs. The students will read Iggy Pig's Big Bad Wolf Trouble to each other. As students work together let them take notes on how many mistakes each one of them made and the time it took their partner to read. They should also note whether their partner read with good expression! I will go over what it means to have good expression and remind them of how I practiced the page earlier in the lesson. The group will then switch and do the same for their partner. After class is all finished reading, place all the racecars on the track (poster) so the students will be able to see their progress. The next day the students will read the stories to one another again, noting the same things, hopefully to find changes!
4. During the assessment part of this lesson, the teacher will wander around to the different partner groups and listen to the student read. It is the teacher's responsibility to ensure that they ask comprehension questions as well! These questions will just confirm whether the student was paying attention to the reading. Examples of the questions may include: What did the Big Bad Wolf plan to do at his party? How would you handle a situation where someone wants to cause trouble? These questions can be used as an assessment. Also, this will be an opportunity for students to move their racecar on the track. Every week, a few students should be selected who have not made it to the "finish-line" yet, so they can reach it! Once there, the students will get a special treat for working so hard. This will encourage those who are behind and give each students something to strive for.
Website for a similar lesson: Roaring and Ready to Read! by Courtney Hillman http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/awakenings/hillmancgf.htm
French, Vivian. Iggy Pig's Big Bad Wolf Trouble, 1998. Scholastic, Inc. New York.
Slobodkina, Esphyr. Caps for Sale, 1940. Harper Collins, USA.
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