By this time of year, you know you need to find good reading comprehension passages with questions and interventions for some of your students! Those are not always easy to find, and much less easy to find passages that you think your students will enjoy! I finally wrote my own nonfiction passages and questions and packed it with useful content and measures so that I could get the most bang for my 10-15 minute intervention time with my students. Here’s how I use these passages.
The content of the passages I wrote for my students is nonfiction. I did this in order to ensure that I am providing them with background knowledge in science and social studies. This also helps build their vocabulary in those subject areas. And, students love reading about timely topics, I used monthly themes to guide the topics which I wrote about to use. For example, October topics are: bats, pumpkins, fire safety, and owls. It’s so hard to fit in thematic topics with all the other things we do each day, this makes it easy for me to be sure I hit that and provide social studies and science vocabulary and knowledge.
Engaging students in repeated readings improves fluency, strengthens their background knowledge, and builds confidence in struggling readers. Students hear me read the passage, then echo read, partner read, and eventually read on their own. Practicing in this way increases students’ reading comprehension. I included an area to record the words per minute and made it easy to calculate by putting a running total of words at the end of each line. Students can see their progress throughout the week. This makes a great intervention for second and/or third grades.
I included several vocabulary activities that are scaffolded from fill-in-the-blank to writing your own sentences with the words. Each day students grow more independent in using the words.
Sight Words/Word Wall Words
I have my students highlight word wall words or their sight words in the passage. This helps them to see that even if the passage might be difficult, there are plenty of words that they can read so it is worth making the effort.
Challenging students with written responses is one of the most important comprehension skills they need. My students need to be able to write responses with PQA (part of the question in the answer) that meet the demands of the question, so I made sure to include that skill with my passages.
How to Use the Resource
Teachers read passage to students while students follow along. Students write some of their word wall words in the table provided and then find them in the passage (teacher can specify words if needed).
Teachers read the passage to students and then echo read one sentence at a time. Students complete the fill-in-the-blank activity using the vocabulary words.
Class/Small group choral reads the passage. Students do written response questions. Timed readings can be done one-on-one with teacher or partner reading (when partner reading, higher reader goes first.)
Students do partner reading and write sentences with vocabulary words.
Students do final timed reading, either with partner or one-on-one with teacher. Students complete the “make a connection” writing activity.
Try one for FREE!
If you are ready to pack a punch with your intervention or fluency time, give these fluency passages a try! I poured my heart into them for my struggling readers, carefully considering scaffolding and building vocabulary. I also wanted to be sure that the reading would be something that they enjoyed, I hope that your students will too.