Reading aloud to students is the most valuable reading you can do in the day. Of course, you will engage students in guided, shared, and independent reading too. However, read alouds have considerable benefits to children. And not just young children.
The act of reading aloud and sharing your thinking will benefit your students in the following ways:
- Develops a richer vocabulary. Listening to new vocabulary and how language is used will expand students understanding of the English language. Students will be exposed to words that may not be common language they utilize daily.
- Builds comprehension skills. Listening to a book allows students to build comprehension by making connections with other texts, their own life experiences, and universal concepts. When a teacher models his/her thinking, students begin to understand what readers think as they read.
- Models fluency and expression. As students listen to an experienced reader who models fluency, intonation, and expression, it will help students incorporate those skills into their own reading.
- Develops listening skills. Students exercise their auditory skills by listening to a book. They commonly use sensory systems that is tactical or visual. They need more opportunities to use the auditory system.
- Engages students in a shared experience. A read aloud can create a classroom community, which in turn, can be the basis for critical thinking and interpersonal skills. A teacher can also use a read aloud book for a touchstone text in his/her classroom, which brings everyone together using a shared text.
- Promotes connections between spoken and written words. Students can see how spoken language connects to written text. Children learn to speak a language first and reading/writing follow. A read aloud can be an enrichment to children’s spoken word that later will translate to their own reading and writing abilities.
- Gives equal opportunity to higher text. A read aloud can be a text that some students would not be able to access on their own because of difficult vocabulary and concepts. A read aloud allows them to access richer text with fewer struggles.
- Discussions from read alouds can help students construct deeper meaning. With the facilitation of the teacher, discussions can touch on critical thinking and deeper meaning of text. Students have can explore concepts they may not have thought of on their own.
- Boosts imagination. By listening to a story, students, especially struggling readers, can enjoy the freedom to imagine without having to focus on the text. Students learn good readers visualize, which is a great strategy to understanding text.
- Encourages a love for reading. Creating a life-long reader is the ultimate goal. By reading to children, teachers can encourage that love of storytelling and connection that comes with shared stories.
I have read the following books to my students this year as read alouds.
- Wonder by R. J. Palacio
- Wishtree by Katherine Applegate
- Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk
- The Wild Robot by Peter Brown
As teachers, we struggle with getting all our curriculum done in the time we are given. Hopefully, read alouds will still be apart of your daily reading instruction. The benefits are paramount to your students growth in reading.
Thanks for stopping by my blog! Next week, I will tell what’s going on in Room B5.