Easter is a great time to have fun with phrasing and fluency with early readers. Grab your bunny ears and check these out!
Use poetry, music and movement!
Remember the Hokey-Pokey song? Years ago I rewrote it into The Bunny Hop for my Kindergarten students. It works particularly well if modeled and students are given the opportunity to echo it back the first few times before giving them a paper with the text (to color – you’ve got to do the actions!):
Bunny ear construction is off the charts in the craft center when this song is in season – be ye warned! Everyone wants to be the bossy bunny who gets to say, “Stop!”
Seize teachable moments to model and emphasize phrasing
Certain phrases just belong together, don’t they? All about the seems to be one such phrase.
When Meghan Trainor was singing I’m All About the Bass every time I turned on the radio in 2014, there was no getting it out of my head. This Fun, Fluency Reader version practically wrote itself as I drove in to school listening to Trainor’s voice every day.
My students knew the tune instantly. I modeled the first read to them, and we practiced a few phrases in isolation before it was fluent and perhaps a little too fun…
There is a twist on a familiar Fairy Tale in this book that made the kids laugh (but humor is a topic for another day…).
Limitation of liability: It’s all about the Eggs is not recommended for those who are prone to getting songs stuck in their head or with one last nerve.
Encourage oral language beyond one word.
Encourage kids to speak in sentences and phrases by asking questions and modeling answers. Kids mimic the adults in their lives (cringe – I’ve heard my own phrases from the mouths of babes a few too many times, have you?). When hunting for an Easter Egg, asking ‘Where is it?’ may elicit a reply of ‘there’ from a little one, but an adult can follow with the modeling of a phrase or phrases, for example: “Oh, yes, it’s under the chair’ for a gentle teachable moment.
While teaching special education to a student with prepositional language goals on an IEP, one of my students did have Easter egg hunts in my resource room to ‘practice’ for Easter.
What are some of your favorite phrasing and fluency boosters?