Home‎ > ‎

Growing Independence And Fluency: Monkey Around With Fluency

Monkey Around with Fluency!

Hope Roberts

GF Design


Rationale: Fluency is the ability to read quickly, swiftly, accurately, and with expression.  In order for students to become better readers they must learn to read fluently. When students become fluent readers they rely less on decoding strategies, and focus on the context of the text. In this lesson students will use rereading as a strategy to build fluency and help students understand the meaning texts.



·         Class set of ‘Junie B Jones and a Little Monkey Business

·         Stop watches for each student

·         Attached worksheet

·         Attached checklist

·         Poster with “The dog knocked over the broom



1. Begin the lesson by introducing fluency. Ask students if they have ever heard the word fluency, then explain that fluency means to read words quickly, accurately, and with expression. Explain that being a fluent reader makes reading much easier and fun because you are able to comprehend what you are reading and enjoy it. Next explain, “I am going to read you the same sentence twice, when I am done we are going to vote on which sentence sounded better. Show students the poster with the sentence “The dog knocked over the broom.” First read the sentence as follows: “ The dog /k-noc-d/ hmmm k-noc-d doesn’t really make sense, what about the dog knocked? The dog knocked /oo-ver/ over the /br-o-me/ , hmm brome doesn’t sound like a word, I think the word is broom.” Let me try this sentence again, “the dog knocked over the broom.” Ask students to raise their hands if they thought the first or second reading of the sentence sounded better. Ask students, “Why did the second reading sound better? (Wait for responses.) That’s right the second time I read the sentence I did not have to stop, and try to figure out the words.


2. Say, “Did anyone notice how I thought about what a word should really be when I finished the sentence? What I did is called crosschecking. You can use crosschecking when you are reading by finishing the sentence you are reading, then seeing if you can figure out the pronunciation of the word you were not sure about. For example when I was reading I thought the word broom was ‘brome’. When I finished the sentence I realized ‘brome’ did not make sense, and realized the word was really broom.


3. Now lets practice together by reading a sentence from the first page of the book ‘Junie B. Jones and a Little Monkey Business’. Read together, “B stands for baby, I’m only in kindergarten. But I know how to spell baby.” “I noticed some people had trouble with the word kindergarten, but since you are all fabulous readers you used the rest of the sentence to help you figure it out.”


4. Say: “Today we are going to read the first chapter of the book ‘Junie B. Jones and a Little Monkey Business.’ Junie B is excited because she has a new baby brother! Before she meets him she over hears her grandmother calling him “the cutest little monkey”. The next day Junie B goes to school and tells all of her friends that her new brother is a monkey! Is her brother really a monkey? What will her friends say? You’ll just have to read to find out what happens to Junie B!”


5. Give students the following instructions:

1. Pair up with a buddy; one person will come to the front and get two Partner Reading checklists and two question worksheets from my desk, then return to your seats. While one partner is doing this, the other one will count all the words in this chapter and put that number at the top of your checklist.

2. Each partner will take 3 turns reading the chapter to each other. While one reads, the other will use the stopwatch I’m passing out to time your partner's readings.

3. We must pay close attention to how many mistakes your partner makes each time.  Make tallies like this (show line tally method on the board) for each mistake.

4. Next do a subtraction problem the total number of words minus the number of tallies for each reading.  That number goes on this line:                Words in             seconds

5. Once you have recorded progess answer the questions at the bottom of the sheet about smoothness and errors.

6. Once you are both done reading and filling out your sheets, you may discuss what you have read.

7. Go back to your desks and complete the question handout on a separate piece of paper.

8. Wait for me to call you to my desk



Assessment:  Walk around the room and observe students reading, make sure students are on task and are not confused. When students finish with their partners they will work on the question hand out at their desk. When students are finished have them turn in their time sheets and checklists.  I will call students one by one and have them read the selection for me. I will take a running record calculating their words per minute using wordsx60/seconds. I will also score students on a scale of 1-5 (1 being the worst 5 being the best) on their use of expression.  




Geri Murray, Reading is a Breeze http://www.auburn.edu/~murrag1/murraygf.htm


Aubrey Etheredge, The Reading Maze http://www.auburn.edu/~ale0007/EtheredgeGF.htm


Barbra Park, Junie B. Jones and a Little Monkey Business. Random House Books. 1993







Question Worksheet


1.      Why does Junie B believe she is getting a present?

2.      What did Junie B hear her Grandmother talking about in the kitchen?

3.      How would you feel if you got a new sibling?

4.      What is the problem of the story?




Reading Progress Checklist


Total number of words in chapter____________






1._________ Words in ____________ Seconds


2._________ Words in ____________ Seconds


3._________ Words in ____________ Seconds



Which turn sounded the smoothest?_____________


Which turn had the least number of errors?________________





 Return to Partnerships index