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Reading Aloud: for Kindergarten only?

  • Reading For Fun
  • Elementary

You are busy. You have state standards to meet. You have 30 minutes only for check out and a lesson. Out of the blue, an older student asks why you never read aloud to them-how do you respond?

Did you know reading aloud to students of all ages is beneficial for comprehension, creating a positive classroom environment, and connecting students of various learning styles and reading levels to more books? 

Literacy Specialist Rebecca Bellingham (Columbia University), notes in a TEDTalk that out of all the pages she has read aloud to students, she has never experienced a student who does not enjoy being read to in class-regardless of age.

In my experience as well, this proves to be true. Students can grasp the emotions, action, and character development when a teacher reads a story aloud. Why? If a student, say in 4th grade, is reading a book and getting through the words or the general idea of what the book is about-chances are they may be missing some of the text elements the author intended to be seen. When reading aloud, students can grab at those rich text elements even if the text is not directly in front of their eyes.

So you have no time in the class period or during the year to read to students, you say? Make it apply to your standards!

Working on Folk Tales or Fairy Tales? Research and then read an updated one aloud! (I recommend Land of Stories, of course. Big fan here, Chris!)

Again, how do you respond? Respond by saying yes! Make time to connect with your students in upper grades by reading them a fiction or nonfiction. Let them know you want them to enjoy library time and learn a little bit, too!

Here is the link to the TedTalk I mentioned:

TedTalk Reading Aloud

Great for teachers AND librarians alike.