Monday, January 21, 2013

Easi-Speak for improving fluency and prosody - Giveaway

Congratulations Julie!

I love to do reader's theater with my students because it allows them to not only work on their reading fluency, it also gives them practice on their reading prosody. 

Prosody, the defining feature of expressive reading, comprises all of the variables of timing, phrasing, emphasis, and intonation that speakers use to help convey aspects of meaning and to make their speech lively. One of the challenges of oral reading is adding back the prosodic cues that are largely absent from written language.
Researchers have found strong links between oral reading prosody and general reading achievement. For example, after comparing students’ reading prosody in first and second grades with their reading comprehension at the end of third grade, Miller and Schwanenflugel (2008) concluded that, “early acquisition of an adult-like intonation contour predicted better comprehension.” Another study, which included more than 1,750 fourth graders participating in the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), found a strong correlation between prosody and overall reading achievement (Daane, Campbell, Grigg, Goodman, & Oranje, 2005).

Reader's theater takes a lot of work to get it sounding fluent with lots of expression. Let's face it, a bunch of kids reading a script can be very boring. It is my goal to teach them how to make it interesting and expressive so the audience is engaged. 
Learning Resource's Easi-Speak USB Recorder is a perfect tool to use in this situation. A student can record themselves reading and then instantly play it back to hear how they sound.  As they get more comfortable with the script, their phrasing becomes more natural. The students are sometimes uncomfortable listening to themselves the first time, but usually they want to read better and record again. This powerful tool can help students become more fluent readers.

This device is really handy too. I can plug it directly in to a USB port on any computer to access the recorded files! 

Here is a voice recording of a student who is just beginning to use expression in his reading. He was very excited to hear his voice and continued to practice after the first recording.

Learning Resources has generously offered The Frugal Teacher and Easi-Speak USB Recorder to give away to one lucky reader. To enter, please fill out the Rafflecopter form below.



  1. There are so many uses, that I forgot to mention one in my comment!
    I'd let my kiddos use it in our Read to Self station and record their reading.
    Mary at Pitner's Potpourri
    Pitner's Potpourri Shop on Teachers Notebook
    Pitner's Potpourri Shop on Teachers Pay Teachers

  2. I don't know if I put my comment in the right spot? :(

    I have sooooooo been wanting one of these for my classroom, especially for the five non-readers I still have in my class of 29 second graders. It would encourage them to really try with their decoding - we have PVC whisper phones but being able to hear the playback is so invaluable for me as well as them, I think. I think it is such a great tool and I would buy one myself if my district's budget wasn't so dire - I already spend my own money on copy & writing paper (!) and crayons and pencils etc. :( But you are awesome for giving one away! :)

  3. I would use this with my son as I teach him to start to read!