I remember being called to the carpet, nestled in a small group amongst my friends, for a read aloud by our favorite kindergarten teacher. These were no ordinary stories, however. They were adventures. Journeys to unknown lands. Adventures to far away places. Interactions with some of the most interesting people. I remember the way my teacher would change her voice for each character and how her expression would change to show various emotions. When I would return to my seat for free time, I would grab the same book and mimic all the things she had done during the read aloud. This is where I would say my love for reading began.
I grew up in and around some pretty tough neighborhoods where some things seemed rather unsightly. I didn’t know it at the time, but those read alouds allowed me to escape it all. They introduced me to people, places, things, and ideas that I might not have known otherwise. The stories placed seeds of hope in me from the beginning of time that I’d hoped to become, hoped to see, hoped to go, and hoped to accomplish.
But somewhere along the way, this art got lost. With this post, I intend to encourage you to “Bring Back Good Read Alouds,” right in the comfort of your own home! This simple act, will in turn, encourage the joy factor of reading in your little one, build vocabulary, and model various reading techniques to make for a better reader.
Some Benefits of Reading Aloud
Helps build phonological awareness (the skills that make up the basis of reading)
Exposes children to rich language
Strengthens bond between parent and child
Encourages the love of books and reading
Increases concentration (especially important in the digital age we live in)
Finding the PERFECT READ ALOUD BOOK
Any old book will not do! You want to look for things like:
-Dialogue, lots of dialogue
-Rhymes, Rhythmic Language, Repetition
-Fantasy stories and fairy tales to feed their imaginations
-Stories about children just like them doing everyday things;
-Children’s poems, especially nonsense rhymes
-Humor in any form
Magical Techniques to Make your Story Come Alive
Give voices to characters
Get up and move...Like really put on a show!
Use hand gestures or even puppets
Create suspense by whispering some parts
Check Out Some of My Favorite Read Aloud Stories
Miss Nelson is Missing- James Marshall
Where the Wild Things Are- Maurice Sendak
Goodnight Moon- Margaret Wise Brown
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom- Bill Martin, Jr
Skippyjon Jones- Judy Schachner