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Tuesday, September 18, 2012

The Punctuation Dance

Have you ever had a student who can finally decode words quickly, and so they race through the words, never stopping or pausing?

An important piece of fluency is teaching kids how to react to punctuation. They need to know when to pause, when to make their voice rise, and when to change their tone- and be pausing at the right places, they also gain better comprehension!

The first step for me is helping kids pay more attention to punctuation, and the best way I've found also happens to be the perfect way to get kids up and moving during reading.

This is *not* my original idea- but when I learned it at a reading workshop, I fell in love!

Punctuation Dance- an active, stand-up-and-move strategy for building reading fluency and teaching how to read punctuation!

The Punctuation Dance is very simple. While you can use any text, the Punctuation Dance works best for a text with lots of different punctuation.

When you get to a period, you stomp.
When you get to a comma, you step to the side.
When you get to a question, you put your hands up side to side like you're asking a question and wiggle down a little.
When you get to an exclamation point, you jump in the air with arms up!

This is perfect for that "WOW these kids need to move!" type of morning, but it also helps kids pay attention to the punctuation and how they should read it.


  1. I LOVE this - thanks so much for sharing!!! I hope you feel better soon & really get some rest this weekend. Bronchitis is the worst. :(

    First Grade Fairytales

  2. Very cute idea! I can definitely see how this could help students notice punctuation and help them with the wiggles all at the same time. Thanks for the idea!
    Conversations in Literacy


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