Monday, August 24, 2015

Incorporating Fluency Practice in Upper Elementary and Middle School

Our school year has gotten off to a fantastic start! Students are working hard and teachers are in good spirits.  It's going to be THE BEST YEAR EVER!

As a mom, I think about what I want my sweet Naomi to have in her classroom when she goes to school.  She's only 2 years old, but I want her teachers to do whatever they can to make sure that she experiences success. 

My sweet girl

I apply this same concept to my classroom.  Now that I have a child of my own, I see my students differently.  They are all someone's baby.  Parents want their children to be successful, and the children want to be successful as well, so it is my job to provide them with the right tools.

With that said, I was THRILLED when my friend and colleague Monique Nowak introduced me to MindPlay, a computerized reading program that assesses students and puts them right at their current level so that they can improve on their phonics, reading fluency, and comprehension.  However, that thrill turned to disappointment over the per licence price tag.  It just wasn't feasible to have this program.  I knew my middle school students needed work with fluency and comprehension, and they needed as much practice as possible reading on the computer since many of the tests they take are computerized.  After searching it out, I decided to create my own fluency program using PowerPoint.  

Click the image above to go to your FREE download!

Within this program, students select a speed and read a story before the words disappear off of the screen.  This research-based method for building fluency (and reading stamina!) trains the students' eyes to move from left to right and back  while also building automaticity, which is one of foundations of reading comprehension. 
My MS students working on the fluency program in my computer center

After completing the fluency work, my students respond to 14 multiple-choice questions and receive immediate feedback of correct and incorrect answers with explanations.  They can also click on the built-in hints if they are stuck on a question. My students LOVE this manner of reviewing our fiction standards and have commented on how they are able to read faster over time.

You can pick up the individual story here, or purchase my entire Fairy Tale Edition here

Of course I'm having a giveaway!  One teacher will win my entire Fairy Tale Edition, which sells for $45 in my Teachers Pay Teachers store! Enter up to SEVEN TIMES for your chance to win.  Good luck!

P.S.-Stop by on Fridays for WEEKLY FREEBIES from teachers of all grade levels.  Here are the Friday Freebies from last week. 

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