Flying Through Fluency

Growing Independence and Fluency


By: Presley Hawkins


Rationale: In order for students to become fluent readers, they must have sight word recognition and build their sight word vocabulary. The best and easiest way to do this is to transition from decoding words to automatically recognizing words. Children will build fluency through repeated reading during this lesson. Students will be working with partners and this may help them learn new decoding skills and gain more reading practice. By rereading texts, students will learn to read more words per minute. The more student read, the better they will get at reading. This lesson is designed to increase students’ reading fluency reading and rereading the text to become more familiar with it. Students will be learning a strategy to help them increase their reading fluency when they read independently.


Materials: Classroom set of "Ella Sarah Gets Dressed", Classroom set of the Words Read Record Sheet, pencil for each child, and stopwatch


Words Read Correctly Record Sheet:


NAME: _________________________________  DATE:______________


The 1st time I read __________words correctly and _________ total time to read.


The 2nd time I read __________words correctly and _________ total time to read.


The 3rd time I read __________words correctly and _________ total time to read.



1.) Say: "In order for you all to become the best readers, you have to read fluently. Reading fluently means to read and recognize words fast and accurately. Once we become fluent readers, it will be easier for us to read and understand the text we are reading. Today, we are going to be doing repeated readings to help us become fluent readers. When you repeatedly read a text, you get familiar with seeing the same words and you know the words, which makes it easier to understand the text. Repeated reading will also help you get better at reading aloud so that others can hear and understand what you are reading. Lets start working on our fluency!"

2.) Say: "Using the sentence, " I can play in the rain" I will show you how readers become fluent. First I will demonstrate non-fluent readers; "I can p-l-a-y in the r-a-i-n." I had to decode two words in that sentence and I still am not sure what they are. I am going to try that again. (Repeat the text by blending phonemes and using crosschecking) "I can /p/ /l/ /ay/, oh play because ay says /A/ - I can play in the /r/ /ai/ /n/, hmm, ai says /A/ also, rain; I can play in the rain." I am going to read it for a third time and hopefully make it sound smoother since I am familiar with the words. "I can play in the rain" It made sense to me the third time because I knew the words and read it smoothly. In order to become fluent, we need to use decoding to remember words.

3.) Say: "Now we are going to read Ella Sarah Gets Dressed three time silently to ourselves. Reading silently is a lot like reading aloud, except you do not actually say the word out loud, and just think it in your mind. To practice silent reading, first read in a whisper, then just move your lips with each word without making any sound, and lastly do not move your lips and just read it. Booktalk: This book is about a little girl names Ella Sarah and she wants to wear this certain outfit. Her mother, sister, and father all try to get her to wear something different, but she does not want to. Lets read and find out what she ends up wearing! Do you think she will wear what she wants to wear? Or wear what her family wants her to wear? Remember, our purpose for reading this book is to work on our fluency.

4.) Say: It is ok if you do not know all the words in the book. You can always use the cover-up method when you come across an unfamiliar word. I will show you how to use the cover-up method. Write dig on the board. If I saw this word and wanted to use the cover-up method to help me figure out what it was, I would cover-up everything but the I, so cover-up the d and g. I know that i=/i/ and then I will look at what comes before the vowel, d=/d/. Blend them together to get /di/. Last, you will look at the end letter which is g=/g/. Put it all together and it says /dig/. Use this cover-up method to help you decode words you are unfamiliar with. Read the entire sentence and crosscheck to make sure you have correctly decoded the word and that it makes sense in the sentence. Reread the sentence again to get you back into the story and focused.

5.) After the students have read the book three times through silently to themselves, pair them with a partner. The students will read Ella Sarah Gets Dressed and have one student read while the other one is listening for errors. We are going to do this three times each. Make sure you record how many words you read correctly on you record sheet so that you can see your improvements. We will use Words x 60/ seconds to distinguish how many words you have read per minute. I will be observing and walking around the classroom as my students are doing this.


Assessment: I will collect all the students’ record sheets of how many words they read correctly to assess their progress with fluency. I will use these record sheets to see improvements in each student’s fluency and accuracy by looking how long it took them to read that amount of words on pages 1 -5 of Ella Sarah Gets Dressed. I will be looking for which students are still struggling with fluency and pair them next time with someone who did increase their fluency. I will then ask comprehension questions about the book to make sure they understood what they read. Some questions might include: "What did Ella Sarah want to wear? What did her mom want her to wear? What did her sister say was wrong with her outfit? What did her dad want her to wear? What did she end up wearing? Why was it appropriate?"



1. Wilson, Meg. Squeal into Fluent Reading.

2. Chodos-Irvine, Margaret. Ella Sarah Gets Dressed. Harcourt, 2003.


Return to Transformation Index