How to Build Fluency and Have Fun While Doing It: Three Simple Tips

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First, why is fluency important? Learning to read fluently is an important skill to have both in the classroom as well as in the real world. Reading fluency is the ability not only to read quickly but also to read accurately. This skill means that students can read a text, such as a storybook, without pausing to decode any words they may not know.

So, how what does reading fluency look like in the kindergarten classroom?

While reading fluency does begin in kindergarten, it doesn’t start with students reading quickly and accurately. Reading fluency at the kindergarten level can be working hard on mastering letter sounds, decoding simple words, and recognizing simple sight words. Supporting your students in these areas will help students to learn to read more quickly and with more expression.

Below are three teaching strategies and tools to help you build fluent readers in your kindergarten classroom!

Memorize Different Sounds


Having your students memorize different sounds enables them to decode any word they encounter. Memorizing different sounds is very important for them to have a solid understanding to build upon this skill to become more fluent readers.

One way that you could engage your early learners while still effectively targeting sounds is the Read for Speed Fluency Center Game (you can find this in my TpT store!). Students can choose their race car driver, spin the spinner, and race around the game board (there are eight different ones!). Students will read whatever letter/word they land on and record it on the accompanying recorder sheet!

el education skills block fluency

Reread the Text


Another way to promote reading fluency in kindergarten is to reread the text. While you want to offer various texts, rereading the exact text repeatedly is a great way to build fluency. Students will get faster and better each time when they reread the text.

While you certainly can think of the “text” as a storybook, it also could include the phonics cards/games you can use to engage students in their learning or texts around your room. Therefore, giving your students ample opportunities to read and reread is important, allowing them to gain the practice necessary to become fluent readers!

One way I like to do this is by using poetry journals using the poems from EL Education.

el education kindergarten fluency

Sight Word Mastery


Mastering sight words is probably not new information to you, but it is still an effective way to build student literacy at the kindergarten level. There are SO many ways to incorporate sight word practice into your classroom, but check out the Candy Castle Fluency Game (also in my TpT store!). Play-based learning is a great way to incorporate sight words into your curriculum while engaging your learners!

Also, make sure that you communicate with parents about the sight words you are working on so that they can utilize opportunities at home to continue working on them!

In the end, students will need lots and lots of practice to become fluent readers. It is vital to have the opportunity in their early education to build a solid foundation of skills to help improve their fluency down the road. Check out the TpT store for Read for Speed and Candy Castle to improve your kindergarten student fluency!

el education kindergarten work time center game

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