Five Useful Tips for Practicing Reading Fluency

With many grade levels teaching plant concepts, this poetry set is perfect for extending across the curriculum. It includes an original poem, vocabulary cards, and three post reading comprehension activities. Check out this post for information on using poetry to build reading fluency and to download this free resource.

Of all reading skills in the early grades, building reading fluency is THE most important, and most teachers make working on fluency a top priority. However, sometimes we have children who struggle to catch on. In today’s post, I’m going to use a poetry set I’m sharing with you to talk about how I work on fluency using my favorite poems and partner plays.

INTRODUCING YOUR FLUENCY LESSON

With each poem you use (or any new text really), it’s important to pull from it words you feel will be challenging to read or unfamiliar. For some, a brief introduction may be sufficient if the word is not a high utility word. With words that you know will be beneficial in writing or conversation, take more time to develop full understanding and recognition.

With many grade levels teaching plant concepts, this poetry set is perfect for extending across the curriculum. It includes an original poem, vocabulary cards, and three post reading comprehension activities. Check out this post for information on using poetry to build reading fluency and to download this free resource.

As you can see in the image to the right, I chose six words in all. Students can cut them out for matching, use context to get an idea of the meaning, and after discussion, they can write a kid friendly definition on the back with a picture or sentence if you like.

MODELING READING FLUENCY

When I’m introducing a new poem, we read through the poem chorally first, and I demonstrate the rhythm and phrasing. To help students with the phrasing, you can add slash marks to divide phrases or highlight with two highlighter colors. This process helps students “see” the phrasing and can be applied to paragraph reading too.

REREAD POETRY FOR DIFFERENT PURPOSES TO BUILD FLUENCY

Close reading is not just for passages and picture books. We can closely read poetry too, and by this, I mean revisit with a different purpose in mind. Below, you’ll find a list of ways you can work in rereading:

  • Highlighter hunts for words by spelling pattern or for sightwords.
  • Questioning about the poem (text evidence)
  • Color coding parts of speech or by the number of syllables
  • Performance….recordings , partner reads, recitation
  • Visualizing using the text
  • Analysis of figurative language
  • Graphic organizers when they work with the poem, and
  • Writing in response to the poem
With many grade levels teaching plant concepts, this poetry set is perfect for extending across the curriculm. It includes an original poem, vocabulary cards, and three post reading comprehension activities. Check out this post for information on using poetry to build reading fluency and to download this free resource.

With each reading, students improve automaticity and deepen understanding. With this poem, I chose to include questioning about the poem, word work with parts of speech, visualizing using text information, and making comparisons.

CREATE POETRY ANTHOLOGIES

Kids love keepsakes. If you add each poem you use to a binder or 3 prong folder, your students will each have a book of poems by the end of the year. These can reread on their own, shared with friends, shared with family, and kept forever.

USE OF TECHNOLOGY FOR FLUENCY LESSONS

There are many great poetry sites available for kids and teachers. My favorite is Ken Nesbitt’s site, Poetry4Kids. Another great one is Ted Scheu’s site, That Poetry Guy If we can share these as well as others we come across, kids will visit them and read the poems at home. Additionally, with the technology we have, we can also record and keep student readings for comparison from the beginning, middle and end of the year to demonstrate to our parents how the child’s improved.

With many grade levels teaching plant concepts, this poetry set is perfect for extending across the curriculum. It includes an original poem, vocabulary cards, and three post reading comprehension activities. Check out this post for information on using poetry to build reading fluency and to download this free resource.

To download the sample I used, just sign up for my newsletter below. To check out the poetry bundles and resources in my store, click here. I have created a Sports Poetry Bundle, a Poetry on the Menu Bundle, or get them all in my  Poetry Mega Bundle that target grades 2-4 as well as Concept of Word Poetry bundle for Kindergarten and First. I hope you’ll enjoy using this one with your students.

POETRY PINS:

For more poetry ideas, I’ve created this Pinterest board filled with tons of great ideas.

FINAL THOUGHTS

Fluency is essential for students to get to the real purpose of reading, comprehension. When a students reading is clicking, the meaning flows. However, when it’s not, there is breakdown. I hope these teaching strategies help you in working on fluency with your kids.

With many grade levels teaching plant concepts, this poetry set is perfect for extending across the curriculum. It includes an original poem, vocabulary cards, and three post reading comprehension activities. Check out this post for information on using poetry to build reading fluency and to download this free resource.

Thanks for joining us, and be sure to come back soon. You can also follow me on Facebook or Instagram where I share things regularly. Until next time, happy reading!

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This Post Has 18 Comments

  1. As always, FABULOUS and informative post, Carla! I can't wait to check out the That Poetry Guy website..I've never heard of it before. Thanks for sharing 🙂
    Julie
    The Techie Teacher®

  2. There are just SO many great ideas in this post! Cannot wait to share them with my colleagues as we celebrate April as Poetry Month!
    ~Jennifer

  3. Laura Graham

    What a great set of ideas for poetry, so perfect for April! Thank you Carla!

  4. Janiel Wagstaff

    Carla,
    Thanks so much for writing this post. I am a huge fan of using poetry for multiple purposes. Love that you included the Pinterest board. I'll share your post–waiting for a good time to do so.
    Thanks again for all your hard work! You are a marvel!
    -Janiel

  5. tarafarah7

    Thank you so much! I explored your resources all day yesterday and even met up with my sister to show her. You rock!

  6. Andrea Crawford

    Perfect and just in time for spring AND poetry month! Now, let's have some spring!!

    Andra

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