I am focusing on reading fluency with my senior classes for Term 2. While we can focus on reading fluency in younger classes with prompt cards and fry’s phrases it can be a little trickier to plan for in the older classes.
Before I introduced any strategies for reading fluency I tested my class to establish a baseline. The support teachers helped me to assess the children using the Schonell Reading Test and also a reading fluency benchmark passage from Reading a-z (subscription required).
I then divided my class into three focus groups based on the results. Here are some of the strategies I have implemented and am hoping to implement with my class through a mixture of station teaching and differentiated groups in my class.
I use a programme called Hands on Phonics, (unfortunately I cannot find a link at the moment), within the programme we are looking at syllable division, syllable stress and also some spelling and grammar rules. This will help to break down decode unfamiliar words in harder texts.
I am working with Reading a-z and have the groups on different levels, which in a multi class situation works really well. We focus on a reading comprehension strategy each week and then each group reads a book at their level. This activity is covered in a station teaching model. The strategy is introduced to the whole class and then we divide into three groups guided by a teacher. Children then have the opportunity to read aloud within their smaller group which may be less daunting than reading aloud in class.
Following a recent course from PDST on team teaching I am hoping to introduce peer assessment for fluency. The facilitator recommended using PEAS as peer assessment method Pace, Expression, Accuracy and Smoothness. For this activity I am going to use the Comprehension boxes from Prim Ed. There was one in the classroom and I received another set from Prim-Ed recently. The children will work in pairs and have the same card. They will take turns to read the card while their partner uses the bookmark rubric to peer assess. They can then work together to complete the activities for that card. This can be used in class using a differentiated approach for each group.
I am hoping to introduce independent activities to develop their vocabulary and word reading strategies using the Reading Comprehension and Word reading books from Prim-Ed. I have the set which allows me to choose from different books depending on the level of each child. I will have a more detailed blog post on these books to follow.
Linking with home:
I feel in order to ensure progress in my class I need to also keep the parents informed and involved in some way. I have emailed the class to explain my focus for the term and as part of the class homework they have a read aloud section for 10 minutes. They read from a variety of texts, their in class anthology, graded books or book club books. In this way they can read books at their own level. I informed the parents at the beginning of Term 2 and even in recent parent teacher meetings they noted both concerns and improvements when listening to their child read aloud.
These are some of the strategies in my class at the moment. If you have any questions please send me a PM.