Sentence Fluency

Sentence fluency is a trait based solely on the ear.  Students need to tune their ears to the rhythm and cadence that can be accomplished with sentence fluency.  Using the natural flow of poetry can add clarity to this trait.  Focusing on variety in sentences can help attain fluency.







Sentence Fluency Picture Books


Catwings  by Ursula LeGuin

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom  by Bill Martin

Flower Garden  by Eve Bunting

Joyful Noise: Poems for Two Voices  by Paul Fleishman

My Backpack  by Eve Bunting

The Night Before Christmas  by Clement C. Moore

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  • Choose two different reading basal stories.  One at the pre primer level and at the comprehension level of your students.  Read a portion of both to aloud and ask students what differences they heard, what they enjoyed listening to more.  Hopefully they came up with the fact that one had a variety of sentenc lengths and beginnings.  Use this example as a guideline to use for their writing. 
  • Reading poetry aloud is something that students find they truly enjoy.  It will also help them tune their ear to good sentence fluency.
  • After reading many books with sentence fluency students start to see a variation in sentence beginnings.  Have students brainstorm some catchy sentence beginnings.  Write these beginnings on the board and have students chose four to six beginnings to finish in the form of a paragraph.  At the same time the teacher uses only one of beginnings and writes a paragraph. Once everyone is finished writing share the teachers versus some of the other students.  Question the students on what they noticed and can learn from the activity.
  • Use poetry to give students practice reading aloud and break it up into parts for a choral reading.  Have the small group present their choral reading  to the class.

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