I am going to share with you a powerful way to improve reading fluency. So much talk in the past few years surrounds improving DIBELS scores.

What are DIBELS?  DIBELS stands for The Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills.  This benchmark was developed back in the 1970s and 1980s.  It all started at the University of Minnesota.  The goal was to find a cost effective way to measure literacy skills and to identify young students who are at risk for falling behind in reading.

Over several decades numerous researchers and specialists have continued to add to our knowledge base in DIBELS.  These efforts increase the effectiveness of helping students in need.

Improving DIBELS scores has become the holy grail of reading instruction. Here is one of the most effective strategies that we use at Red Apple Learning Center.

We call it Repeated Reading.
I recommend that you do this at least once every day with your student to improve DIBELS scores.  All you will need is a clock with a second hand and a book at your child’s reading level.

Here it is in four steps:

1. Starting at the beginning of a chapter read out loud to your child while he reads silently along with you. Stop when you have read for one minute.
2. Now start back at the beginning of the chapter.  This time you and your child read out loud together for one minute. He should try to match your reading pace and voice inflection.
3.  Starting at the beginning of the chapter again, your child will read aloud by himself for one minute.
4.  Repeat step 3.   Almost always the student is able to read a little more in step 4 than he was in step 3.  Point this out to your student to encourage him in the future.

If you have the discipline to perform repeated reading every day, you will be delighted with the improvement in your child’s DIBELS scores and overall reading fluency.