I’ve mentioned this before, and I am sure I will mention it a million times again, I absolutely LOVE teaching reading! I love giving my students the tools to “drive the vehicle” and letting them go at it. We’ve been working hard on our reading fluency while reading short vowel CVC words and my students are ROCKSTARS! Honestly, the best readers I have had in my whole teaching career! Now I’m sure it’s just the group of students I have this year, but I’m also going to take just a little bit of credit 😉
My students have been loving working on their reading fluency using our sight word sentences so I knew I needed to create a similar activity that reinforces the short vowel words we are learning and focus on reading fluency passages. These short vowel reading fluency passages have been a huge hit!
What does reading fluency mean?
Fluency practice is such an important way to help emerging readers with their reading so let’s talk a little about what it means! Fluency is defined as the ability to read with speed, accuracy, and proper expression. Reading fluently simply means reading like you talk. When you speak, you don’t sound out each word before you say it, your speech flows. That’s exactly what reading fluency is. Being able to read so that the text flows easily.
How do you teach reading fluency?
Teaching your students to read fluently just takes practice! You can make it fun by using tools to help make the practice less monotonous. My students love using little googly eye rings on their fingers as they point to the text we are working on. It is engaging and fun! We also have used witch fingers from Halloween, colorful drink stirrers as reading wands, highlighter sticks, and magnifying glasses.
I also think it is important to have a specific focus skill when practicing fluency. Using word families words is a great way to increase reading fluency. Word families all have the same rime (ending sounds) so my students only need to focus on the beginning sound that changes.
Using the reading fluency passages:
Each page of my reading fluency passages focuses on a specific word family. The kiddos first practice reading the words in isolation. We always talk a lot before we read 😉 I ask my students what they notice about the words to help them see that they are all part of the same word family. Then we talk about how we only have to change the beginning sound in each word as we read them. I like to write the words up on the whiteboard too, saying the word aloud and having my students help me sound it out as I write. We first read from the board, then we touch and read each word on our page, making sure we “read like we talk” rather than sounding out each word.