Great Books to Read Aloud to Your Students

FOUR TIPS FOR READING ALOUD TO ALL AGES

Sharing good-quality literature, both fiction and nonfiction, is an integral part of literacy instruction for all students. When sharing books with your students, follow these steps:

for grades K–3

for grades K–3

1) CHOOSE A BOOK

  • Choosing a book to read aloud that connects to a topic or theme already being studied in the class reinforces learning. Books can be of different lengths: a picture book, a short novel, a short story.
  • For older students, include fiction and nonfiction picture books with mature themes, complex illustrations, more difficult text, subtle meanings, and multiple layers of meaning.

    for grades 5–12

    for grades 5–12

2) INTRODUCE THE BOOK

  • Create a special space in the classroom for book sharing to help convey to students the perception of importance.
  • Point out that people of all ages enjoy and can become engrossed in a story being read to them.
  • Allow time for students to consider the cover (picture and text) and to formulate some thoughts and questions about the story. Ask questions and initiate discussions of the cover illustrations and title to help activate students’ background knowledge relevant to the text. Fill in any gaps in information that the students need in order to understand the story.

    for grades 5–9

    for grades 5–9

3) READ THE BOOK ALOUD

  • Read the book, pausing at key moments to share with the students your thinking about the passages. Model your think-alouds with examples of different types of connections: text-to-self, text-to-text, and text-to-world.

4) DISCUSS THE BOOK

  • After reading aloud, make the book available in the classroom for individual browsing and reading.
  • Share reactions and responses through discussion. When feasible, engage students in drawing, writing, dramatizing, or other response activities that require them to reconstruct the story or make connections to life experiences.

from the books
It’s All About Thinking: Collaborating to Support All Learners
by Faye Brownlie and Leyton Schnellert
The Language Experience Approach to Literacy for Children Learning English
by Pamela JT Winsor

 

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