First and Foremost… Students need opportunities to silently read their texts to ensure better student engagement with reading “Silent reading has also been more positively related to reading achievement than has small group oral reading” (Allington, 1984).
Silent Reading is Important, but is Oral Reading Important Also? Absolutely! Why? To whet students’ appetites for reading when teachers read aloud to students To share or perform, especially when students demonstrate where they locate an answer or want to perform Readers Theater To understand that reading, writing, speaking, listening, and viewing are integral to everyday life
More Reasons Oral Reading Is Important Oral reading helps: To develop listening comprehension and to expand vocabulary To develop fluency To provide students with additional reading time necessary for ongoing reading growth To build confidence by repeatedly rehearsing a selection to read aloud To use as a window into how children read on their own Opitz and Rasinsky, 1998, pps. 3 – 6 Goodman, 1965, 1996.
Fluency More Fluent Readers Can Recognize words automatically. Read aloud effortlessly and with expression. Focus their attention on making connections among the ideas in a text and between the ideas and their background knowledge. Focus on comprehension. Less Fluent Readers… Focus their attention primarily on decoding individual words. Have little attention left for comprehending the text.
Building Fluency Continued reading practice with connected text helps word recognition become more automatic, rapid, and effortless. Repeated oral reading improves the ability of all students. Round robin instruction has been proven to be the least effective (and often detrimental) method to building fluency.
Why Move Away From Round Robin Reading? “Round-robin reading in itself does not increase fluency. This may be because students only read small amounts of text, and they usually read this small portion only once” (Fluency instruction). “Is listed as a major reason why fragile students continue to read below grade level (Tatum, 2004, p. 29) “Has the potential to develop negative attitudes to reading through the anxiety developed over performance reading when it is "your turn" to read. Consider how you feel when asked to read aloud in a public place!” (Limbrick, 2001).
More Reasons to Move Away From Round Robin Reading It provides students with an inaccurate view of everyday reading It can potentially cause faulty reading habits and slower reading rates It can cause inattentive behaviors leading to discipline problems It can work against all children developing to their full potential (Opitz and Rasinski, 1998, pp. 6-7).
Strategies to Integrate Fluency Into Lessons Model Fluent Reading – Read Alouds Repeated Timed Readings Partner Reading Read Around Paired Repeated Readings Echo and Choral Reading Independent Reading at Appropriate Level Tape Assisted Reading Readers Theater See Good-bye Round Robin Reading for descriptions and additional strategies
An Oral Reading Strategy: Readers Theater Readers Theater allows you to group students heterogeneously. –Allows fragile readers to hear strong readers as a model –Allows fragile readers to participate at their own reading level –Allows strong readers to become more confident Readers Theater allows students to practice before they read aloud –Fragile readers are intimidated by reading “cold” in front of the class –All readers gain from rereading the same passage or lines –Allows the teacher to help students move up the District Fluency Rubric continuum
Readers Theater Readers Theater Is Is Not Scripts are leveled for individual student reading abilities Cast practices reading parts together Cast stands in front of audience and reads aloud from a script Cast reads with meaning and expression Never a cold read for the student Students do not memorize lines There are no sets, props, or costumes They are not required to move around on a stage Does not involve logistics
A Reading Fluency Rubric Level 5: Outstanding Read in meaningful chunks Entirely read with expression Level 4: Very Good Read in 3-4 word phrase groups Mostly read with expression Level 3: Satisfactory Read in 2-3 word phrases Meaningful sentence structure preserved Level 2: Needs Improve. Primarily read in 2 word phrases - awkward Little read with expressive interpretation Some decoding errors Level 1: Unsatisfactory Read word-by-word None read with interpretative expression Many decoding errors
“Education is not the filling of a pail but the lighting of a fire.” - William Butler Yeats No more round robin reading!
References and Resources Cooter, R. et al. (2004). Searching for lessons of mass instruction? Try reading strategy continuums. The Reading Teacher 58-4 (pp ). Fluency Instruction. Put reading first. National Institute for Literacy. ons/reading_first1fluency.html. ons/reading_first1fluency.html Harris, T. & Hodges, R. (1995). Literacy Dictionary. International Reading Association. Kuhn, M. (2004). Helping students become accurate, expressive readers: Fluency instruction for small groups. The Reading Teacher 58-4 (pp ). Limbrick. D. (2001). Round robin reading. English online Resource Center. ces/round_robin.html ces/round_robin.html Opitz, M. & Rasinski, T. (1998). Good-bye round robin: 25 effective oral reading strategies. Heineman: Portsmouth, NH.