Reading Fluency is an important element of literacy and should be encouraged from the early years. NEPS have developed their own document Balanced Approach to Literacy Development in the Early Years which documents many literacy skills for early years and infant classes.
I particularly like the Literacy Tree that they include in their document.
Literacy Tree – NEPS Balanced Approach to Literacy Development in the Early Years.
Language forms the trunk of the tree and reflects the importance of developing oral language when developing reading skills.
Fluency is just one element of meaningful reading. There are many strategies to develop reading fluency in the infant classes.
Prompt Cards: Focusing on a set of 5 words from the Dolch List, the children can read through the card and identify all the words. Then ask the child to repeat this activity as fast as they can and time them. This will encourage the children to build their recall skills and aid their reading fluency.
Phrases: There are many examples of Fry’s phrases online. These are short phrases and sentences created using the Dolch words. Children are again encouraged to read the phrases as fast as they can. This could be used with Senior Infants in Term 3 or for infants that may need an additional challenge. This activity could also be used in other classes as the phrases can become more difficult.
Games: Games such as Roll Say Keep and bingo also help with word recall and fluency. I purchased a game called Fry Words Spin and Read from the Primary Techie and my class loved it. The spinner will choose a character and the children then must read all the words in role as the character. It could be a robot, a baby, a princess to name a few. The class were really engaged. Primary Techie has lots of other downloads of games for sight words. Find her on Teachers Pay Teachers or click here.
These are only some of the many fluency activities available for infant classes. I have prompt cards for Dolch words in my Mash.ie store. If you have any questions about this post please send me a PM.