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“Webcam Research Helps Kids Improve Reading Fluency”

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Webcam Research Helps Kids Improve Reading Fluency describes a research project where students were taped when they were having their reading fluency assessed. According to the study, their ability to see themselves read resulted in improvement.

Certainly any strategy where students can see for themselves the progress they make over time can be a very effective confidence booster and a useful formative assessment tool, and I write about that in my upcoming book. The report, though, seems to say that all of the student’s improvement could be attributed to the Webcam recording, and not to anything else they did in the classroom. If I’m reading it correctly, then that seems to be an overstatement.

However, it has gotten me thinking. Webcams are problematic for our schools because of the difficulties of getting software approved to download. We do have reading fluency assessments, though, where students read short one minute passages to us three times each year. There’s no reason why we couldn’t have our Intermediate English students read them using one of the tools on The Best Sites To Practice Speaking English list, like FotoBabble.

Have any of you used video or audio recording in this way?

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Author: Larry Ferlazzo

I'm a high school teacher in Sacramento, CA.

One Comment

  1. I have had this goal in mind for awhile but logistics keep getting in the way… Anyway, here it is:

    I want my students to record themselves reading a fluency passage at the beginning of the school year (using Audacity) so they can play back what they have read and hear themselves. Then, once they have have heard themselves we can discuss the different levels of fluency – automaticity, accuracy, rate, inflections, etc. From there we can then set individual goals for the student and work throughout the year on the goal. Then, at the predetermined intervals, we can re-record the same passage and check for improvement and reset the target goal (if needed).

    I think this would create an opportunity for all students to have a fluency goal for the year — not just those who are struggling with accuracy and rate.

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