Day 104 (of 185) Reading Out Loud #WRAD17 #WorldReadAloudDay
Today is World Read Aloud Day. Kind of a fun time – to focus on reading stories using out-loud-voices.
This is important because it acknowledges that not all stories should be read using “inside voices” and that not all students can process ‘reading’ only using sight. The “read aloud” concept has been used forever – sharing stories to a group…..only comparatively recently have we been able to include ‘texts’ to create a common experience – almost every canadian student is familiar with Robert Munsch – and his books almost HAVE to be read out loud.
And I know that there are concerns – especially around the ‘audience’. It seems today that children have a difficult time sitting and listening. And it may be true – there aren’t many opportunities to have a story read to you except at school, and sometimes at night. So having times to “practice listening” is ever more important – especially when expecting (introducing?) students creating ‘pictures in their minds’ <– needing to scaffold this reading concept for some!
But it’s also important to realize that read alouds aren’t for everyone. My youngest daughter recognizes that she likes stories to be read to her, but she only really understands them when she can follow along on the page at the same time – or when she reads out-loud to herself (apparently a tad embarrassing in middle school). This is a recent acknowledgement of hers, and I am trying hard to balance that now when I am doing read alouds at school, sometimes using my iPad and AppleTV to broadcast the pages/words in a ‘bigger’ format! I continue to be guided by my students (part of a large descriptive-feedback-loop) to do better “next time”.
To recognize World Read Aloud Day this year, I opted to Read Dahl Loud (sounds the same) via The Enormous Crocodile – a book that I get to read in very loud voices with all the students in the gym! And when there is a good story being read, the audience can be very good! It’s nice because it’s not a long book, and while I do read books to classes in the library, it’s not usually the same book – so it’s nice to get everyone together to read all together (and even my grade 8s seemed to enjoy the break in their day!)
Reading aloud is fun. It’s not always easy. It’s good to have some water nearby. But it’s fun to bring a large group together to read aloud and remember:
a) how important this skill – both as a reader and a listener – is
b) that as much as it is fun, it still doesn’t ready “every” leaner because every student is unique!
A big thank you to the teachers, librarians, principals, teachers, etc etc that have made a commitment to make Global Read Aloud Day a reality for so many listeners!