Tips for Reading Aloud

I didn't have a lot of money when my kids were little, but we had two shelves of favorite books, and we read aloud the same ones over and over. Many a pleasant afternoon was spent in tea parties followed by a reading of Strega Nona or There's a Monster at the End of This Book.
When my first grandson was born, my daughter named him Max. He quickly grew to fit the book character he had been named for, the King of All Wild Things. "He likes to listen to the book too," my daughter told me. "And when I read it to him, I can hear your voice in my ear." There's nothing she could have told me I would have treasured more.

The first time you pick up a book, hold it before your child's eyes, and begin to read. You are teaching your child what a book is, what to do with it, and what joys may come of it.

Readaloud Tip #One: Pick a Great Book

Start with a fresh book...

Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus by the great Mo WillemsI’ve chosen a book whose story I really love. It has great illustrations and I can’t wait to share it with the kids.
curated content from YouTube

Readaloud Tip #3: Prediction

This is really the fun part!

The children are there, and I hold up the book. I’m ready to begin, but I need to grapple on to their brains and haul them into place.
“This book is called Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus. Huh, that’s weird. Would it be a good idea to let PIGEONS drive buses?”
This is a very important step. Prediction will start stirring their little synapses around, get them guessing about the book, and looking at the pictures with real involvement. (Get it? Interactive readaloud?)

Readaloud Tip #4: Use the book to explain new words and situations

As you read, you may encounter words the children won’t know. Pause briefly, give them a quick synonym, and move on. This will help give them the meaning but not interfere with the flow of the story.

As you read, you may encounter opportunities to tie the book back to them and their experiences. This is when reading to your own child is so great, because you will know and be able to share really meaningful experiences with them. It’s harder for me to do; I always end up with a lot of three year olds telling me things like, “I haven’t gotten my pinata for my birthday yet!”

Readaloud Tip #5: Enjoy Your Words

Readaloud Tip #6: Retelling: Narrative Skills

Bonus Tip: How to Use Wordless Books.

It’s so fun reading those bedtime stories now, but in just a few years your children will be expected to spin their own yarns while the clock ticks in a classroom, and they’ll be graded accordingly.

Maybe you’ve always avoided wordless books because — they’re wordless. I mean, what do you do, look at the pages and just make stuff up?

Yup! Think of wordless books as story starters with fabulous illustrations. Share one with your child every once in a while, and talk about what the characters look like they’re feeling, what details in the page predict what will happen next in the story — in short, all those ingredients that your child will use to one day create stories of his or her own.

Foreign Language

My foreign language section is skimpy at best. I live in a beach community with visitors from all over the world. I can give a wordless book to a speaker of any language, and they can have a nice exchange discussing the book spontaneously and naturally.

 curated content from YouTube

Special Fun Tricks

The Napping House is a cumulative story, like a “clothesline story.” It has eight elements: a house, a bed, a granny, a child, a dog, a cat, a mouse, and a wakeful flea. Gee, what else has eight elements? A musical scale! A patron gave me his son’s old xylophone, I taped the elements of the story to the keys, and I was easily able to enjoy reading the story and pointing out the pictures while moving up the scales on the xylophone. I struck each key three times when its corresponding element was read out loud.

So satisfying to have a room of two and three year olds listening to you! They were fascinated. The next time you’re reading to your child, think of incorporating a little music into the beat.

Photo by TF Sherman

Other Articles on How to Do More at Storyhour than Bore Your Kid to Sleep

Interactive Readalouds, the Benefits of Reading to Your Child.
We don't need too much persuasion that reading to our children is a great idea, but she gives some gret tips about something we sometimes forget. Reading books to children isn't always something we do to make the little beggars go to sleep -- we also do it to make them smart little beggars!
Growing Like a Read
Download activity logs for these ages.
7 - 12 Months
13 - 18 Months
19 - 24 Months
25 - 30 Months
31 - 36 Months
37 - 42 Months
43 - 48 Months
Each log includes info about how to bring books, sounds, places and letters into your baby's life every day.
7 Ways to interactively read aloud
Just reading out loud? There's a lot more you could be doing with your child at the same time.
Well known childrens' authors read their books.
Jackpot! Famous authors read their books through this program sponsored by Barnes and Noble.
Storyline Online
Wonderful picture books read by members of the Screen Actors Guild. Great stuff!
Mem Fox
The Ten Commandments of Mem Fox on how to enjoy reading with your young child.

No comments:

Post a Comment