Every day when we get back from lunch, half of our kids do guided reading (we combine with another class so the other teacher and I are both running guided reading groups) and the other half of our kids complete independent stations. After 30 minutes, we switch. But before we get started with guided reading, our kids independently complete a couple 1-minute fluency timings while we get the other kids settled into their independent activities. This activity is a great, structured way, to keep kids busy with independent work. It also works on increasing their ability to think of items (quickly) that are related to a variety of topics (which can be helpful for journal writing, building vocabulary, and increasing conversational skills).
For most of the year, I have just been writing our topics on the white board...but this was a pain and made it hard to think of a new topic each day. So just last week, I created this great little pocket chart of timings that is set up for a week at a time! I am super excited about it if you can't tell! It only took me about 20 minutes to put together and it has already made our transition a lot smoother!
On the left are abbreviations for the days of the week.
These colored slips are my students' initials who will be "in charge" of running the timing. Being in charge basically consists of making sure the other students have their materials (a pencil and notebook) and saying "ready, set, go" while starting the timer. The teachers modeled this for a couple months last year before putting the students "in charge," but now they are great at it. They even write rules on the board and help the other kids practice before they start the timings. It is super cute!
On the right are the timing topics for each day. The kids write these at the top of their notebook page before starting the timing.
Here is our lovely magnetic timer already set to 1-minute (that is stuck right beneath our pocket chart).
Not sure how clear these will show up, but here are some examples of what the timing sheets look like in the kids' notebooks. This one is a letter timing (kids count up how many they get at the end and circle the number).
This is an animal timing.
This is a timing for "words that rhyme with not"