Friday, July 26, 2013

A little more fluency fun...

If you have been reading for a while, then you know that I worked on fluency the second half of the year last year. And you know that my kids loved it. And just like anything else we do as teachers, I have spent some time thinking about how I can incorporate more fluency or what can be done better. My original post for 10 min fluency fun can be found here.

Then I came across Tessa's powerpoints that I shared about here. Those are most definitely going to be used with my low tier 3 kiddos to get some extra time to work with me on fluency. I am going to turn this into a fun game/challenge with rewards to get them motivated. We all know that the struggling readers are the ones that need the motivation.

And then I got to thinking... ok I test these kids weekly with our AIMSweb tests. But is there anything else I can do with them? Something where they are reading longer passages for fluency instead of just phrases, more than just once a week, and something they could work with all week? Enter Melissa's fluency passages.

There are 15 fiction and 15 nonfiction passages with 3 comprehension questions each. Each passage has a teacher version and a student version. The teacher version has numbers down the side to make counting the number of words easier. It also has a chart on the bottom where you can keep track of the number of correct and incorrect each day. There is also a homework log for teachers that want to send it home to be worked on with parents. If you have the parent support for this, this is a GREAT idea to get parents involved in fluency practice. A lot of parents want to know how they can help their child do better when it comes to fluency and I think this would be great to send home with those parents. Not every family will do it, we know that. But the ones that are asking (and there are always a few) will definitely get this from me, even if they are my highest readers in the class. The passages are also all leveled by lexile level and in order of level. Finally, there is a track your progress chart where students can color in their cold and hot reads and comprehension questions for each story. We have all had a child that can call out 100+ words, but still has no clue what they read. These questions will help to identify that.

So how am I going to use this? Well that is semi up in the air still. But here is what I am thinking...
On Mondays, my intervention kids that I work with during morning work will read this with me instead of doing a phonics lesson. I am going to give each child the tracking sheet and they will color in their cold read number of words correct. In order for me to save paper and not need a teacher copy for each student, I am going to use different colors to record the students cold read scores on my page. Then I am going to send home the passage with these students to read throughout the week. I won't ask the parents to time them or do the log, just practice reading with them and work on fluency.

On Friday, instead of doing a phonics lesson, I will have them read it to me again and they will record their hot read on their tracking sheet. I will keep track of it on my teacher copy in the same colors that I used on Monday and file it in my intervention folder. (Gotta keep records of everything...) I might make it a challenge where the most improved for the week gets some kind of acknowledgement. Smart beads, fluency start sticker, special pencil, starburst...something. I just haven't figured that part out yet. Job choice for next week maybe... that is always a BIG one in my class. They all want to pick their jobs.

Now what about the kids who have parents that ask how they can help at home?  Well, I think what I will do is have a few passages printed, copied, and stapled together. I will send them home with the parents and explain exactly what to do with their child, as if I were the one doing it in the class with them. I will probably send home 4 at a time (so they have a full month). Basically they will be doing the same thing at home that I am doing with my tier 3 kiddos. I will let the parents be the teachers. They will have the comprehension questions, passages, and tracking sheets. 

If you are looking for some fluency practice for your kids, I highly suggest looking at Melissa's product. You can get to the listing by clicking on the picture above.

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