Read Aloud with Children

5 May

Recently I have been working with my son on reading aloud, because his reading test at school shows his reading speed is below average. I am not too concerned about his reading speed, since I know he can read fast when he doesn’t have to read aloud. But I do want to work with him on reading aloud as a way to improve his self-expression and story telling skills.

To do a good job in reading aloud, kids have to learn to coordinate multiple tasks into a smooth process: “read by eyes”, “process information by brain”, and “read out aloud”. My son is good at each single task, but is not so good at putting all tasks together.

What I have been doing is to find short stories for us to read to each other. One book my son has enjoyed is the FREE Aesop for Children from Libray of Congress. They are short and all are good stories. We will each read 1 or 2 stories. Because they are short, I can find time to ask him read the words that he did not pronounce clearly again.

Another thing I just started doing is to listen to professional read children’s books together. One good resource I found is Caldecott Literature Series from New Hampshire Public Television. It has many prefessional read children’s books. While watching the videos, I asked my son to pay attention to the rhythm and intonation, and try to mimic how others reading the book. I try to point out the importance of pause – where and how long do you pause for a comma or a period.

Do you have to work with your child on reading aloud? What would you suggest to use for a school age child? Any tips you would like to share?

289 Responses to “Read Aloud with Children”

  1. wheredreamscollide October 11, 2014 at 4:32 am #

    here on the recommendation of Crafty lady. Congrats and hope to see more of your great works :)

  2. Kyaza October 14, 2014 at 7:29 am #

    My mom taught me to read when I was three – way before I ever started school – and I remember some of the methods she used.

    She used flashcards with sight words to teach me the words, and she never sat down with me and tried to get me to learn each individual letter of the alphabet before doing so because she told me that words were just pictures with sounds put to them. That concept helped me tremendously.

    When it came to reading out loud, she taught me by having me place an index card under the line of text I was reading and move it from word to word. She told me that it was important that I “say” the entire word in my head as I read it and that translated into a natural ability to read out loud.

    I’ve noticed, over the years, that the people I know who struggle with reading out loud struggle because they do not take the time to “say” each individual word in their head as they read.

    Ironically, the index card method that she taught me to use in order to enhance my understanding of the material, as well as my ability to read out loud, is the same trick used to teach people how to speed read.

  3. momformation October 28, 2014 at 5:21 pm #

    Just read your post about reading aloud and I was reminded of the books on CD I used to order for my kids to keep them ‘entertained’ when I needed to grab a quick shower…or to keep them occupied during ‘quiet time’ this summer. I do think that how I read aloud to them matters….for instance when reading story books I use different ‘voices’ and now I am noticing that my 1st grader also uses different voices for different characters when he’s reading his AR books out loud to me. Good luck with the reading :)


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