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Masters of Special Education with Academic Instruction Certification

Read Naturally - Topic 46

What is it?

Read Naturally is fluency-focused program that includes teacher modeling, repeated reading, and progress monitoring to increase reading proficiency.  All of the Read Naturally programs follow similar steps.  The steps usually consist of selecting a story, determining key words, predicting what will happen from the title and key words, cold timing, read along, practice, quiz questions, and retell.  Cold timing occurs when the student reads through the story for the first time and is timed.  This is considered a baseline performance for the student on the new story.  Read along is the teacher modeling portion of the strategy.  The teacher models correct pronunciation, expression, and phrasing.  Practice is the repeated reading component of the strategy.  The student reads through the story multiple times to improve fluency.  The student times him or herself on each practice round.  The quiz questions test the student’s comprehension of the story.  For the retell, the student writes what he or she learned from the story and the sequence of events that occurred.  This component of the strategy also tests comprehension.  

Why is it important?

Read Naturally improves reading fluency in young students.  It also is designed to allow students to progress through the program at his/her desired rate.  The student is not placed under additional pressure to keep up with peers.  The student also has some independence with book selection, as well as, the number of times he or she chooses to practice.  As a self-paced program it can require additional work for teachers when all students are at different levels within the program.  However, there is a computerized version of the program now, which minimizes the documentation component for teachers.  


Hasbrouck, J. E., Ihnot, C., & Rogers, G.H. (1999).  “Read Naturally”: A strategy to increase oral

reading fluency.  Reading Research and Instruction, 39(1), 27-37.  


Web Links

Read Naturally Program Website

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