Reader’s theater scripts are a favorite of both mine and my students. I LOVE writing them and they LOVE performing them. Using reader’s theater helps my students to build fluency because students are reading with expressiveness in the given words and sentences they are reading aloud. In addition, a reader’s theater script can be utilized more than once in order to build a student’s comfort level with the text and allow for more expressive reading to take place, the more the script is read.
While they can be hard to incorporate into instruction EVERY week, I try to include them as often as I can. Through reader’s theaters my students are engaged in classroom read aloud sessions and either modeling, developing, or hearing prosodic reading.
Partner reading is something my students look forward to. They enjoy the opportunity to work together and navigate text. While it is essential that students have opportunities to navigate texts independently, reading with a peer enhances student fluency. I have my students partner read in a variety of ways.
- I partner up same level readers to read aloud a text alternating paragraphs.
- I partner up a high-level reader with a struggling reader and alternate sentences.
- When students are reading text independently, stop, find a peer, and read aloud their favorite part.
Allow students to sit on the floor, at special tables, under desks, etc., to make partner reading times even more enjoyable. The idea is that text is being shared aloud so fluency practice is at work.
This may seem silly, but friendly competition really gets my students inspired and motivated. With Speed Spelling, we tackle studying spelling words and fluency all in one when students speed read through their word list.
Because my students have twenty spelling words each week and little studying takes place outside of the classroom, this is a fun way to get eyes on the words. Partner students, have the person on the right go first, start a timer and give students 10-20 seconds to read through their list as quickly as possible. The partner that reads through the list most accurately, and the quickest, wins. They don’t have to win anything other than a high five, but they are reviewing their words and reading aloud quickly. WIN! WIN!
By incorporating so many fun ways to build fluency, my students forget they despised reading aloud at the beginning of the year. When you make word work enjoyable, the complaints and frustrations will truly go by the wayside.