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Family Reading Jana Crosby, Reading Specialist Read to Succeed Initiative Alissa Ongie, Preschool Project Coordinator Tennessee State Improvement Grant Why read aloud? We have 100% enthusiasm and desire to read in young children when they start school… What happens?

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family reading

Family Reading

Jana Crosby, Reading Specialist

Read to Succeed Initiative

Alissa Ongie, Preschool Project Coordinator

Tennessee State Improvement Grant

why read aloud
Why read aloud?

We have 100% enthusiasm and desire to read in young children when they start school…

What happens?

By 4th grade, 45.7% of children read for pleasure each day.
  • By 8th grade, 27% of children read for pleasure daily.
  • By 12th grade, 24.7% of children read ANYTHING for pleasure daily –

What happened to the 100% we had in K?

“The single most important activity for building the knowledge required for essential success in reading is reading aloud to children.”

Becoming a Nation of Readers, 1985

reading aloud should happen
Reading Aloud should happen
  • At home
  • In the classroom
  • AND, at all age and grade levels!!
reading aloud
Reading Aloud
  • Associates reading with pleasure
  • Creates and/or build background knowledge
  • Provides reading role models
according to jim trelease
According to Jim Trelease….
  • Humans are pleasure centered
  • Reading is an accrued skill


Reading aloud provides a means to an end -- the pleasure and love for reading!

benefits of reading aloud
Benefits of Reading Aloud
  • It is fun
  • Reading and listening skills are improved and reinforced
  • Interests and tastes are broadened
  • The imagination is exercised
  • Background knowledge and vocabulary are built
  • Reading maturity develops
  • Reading independence is promoted
  • Lifelong readers may be developed
Listening Levels


Reading Levels

stages of reading aloud
Stages of Reading Aloud
  • Talk with babies
  • “Label”ing a toddlers world
  • Interactive – “touch and feel” books
  • Favorite books
  • Wordless/Predictable books
  • Waldo, Pop-up, Joke books
  • Picture books
  • Beginning chapter books
  • Chapter books
why do children become attached to particular books
Why do children become attached to particular books?
  • Reassurance – family/security (Whose Mouse are You, Robert Krauss)
  • Identification (Sam’s Teddy Bear, Robert Kraus)
  • Humor (Curious George, H.A. Rey)
  • Predictability (Brown Bear, Brown Bear, Bill Martin, Jr.)
  • Artistic Distinction (The Snowy Day, Ezra Jack Keats)
  • Rhythm (Bear Snores On, Karma Wilson)
  • Happy (association w/ feelings) (Blueberries for Sal, Robert McCloskey)
  • Gimmick books (Where’s Waldo?; Where’s Spot?)
  • Special Interest (Big Wheels, Anne Rockwell)
establishing a successful read aloud time
Establishing a Successful Read Aloud Time
  • Make a do not disturb sign and use it.
  • Plan time to read and discuss the book.
  • Do not skip days when reading to your child.
  • Set aside time every day.
  • Don’t let read aloud be an optional activity on busy days.
  • Let your child know that you enjoy it!
preparing to read aloud
Preparing to Read Aloud
  • Plan to read aloud at least once a day.
  • Choose quality books that you find FUN!
  • Choose books with good illustrations.
  • Consider any vocabulary words that your child might not know.
  • Read the book to yourself BEFORE you read it to your child.
  • Use props to help the story come alive.
selecting books to read aloud
Selecting Books to Read Aloud
  • Read from multiple genres: alphabet books, rhyming books, fiction, non-fiction, wordless books, etc.
  • Read as many of your favorites as possible.
  • Never, NEVER read a book that you have not already read!
  • Be open to suggestions/requests from your child.
  • Try to select books that will have your child “listen UP”

REMEMBER… the art of listening is an acquired skill – it must be developed and it will take time! (Jim Trelease)

do s of reading aloud
Do’s of Reading Aloud
  • Begin reading as young as possible.
  • Use Mother Goose rhymes to stimulate infant’s language and listening.
  • Read and reread predictable/repetitive books.
  • Allow your child to insert key words/phrases when rereading
  • Read OFTEN!
  • Vary length and subject matter
  • Insert your child’s name and family members’ names
  • Allow your child to get involved (hold book, turn pages, etc.)
  • Make sure your child can see the pictures, and talk about the pictures
  • Adjust pace/voice to read the story
don ts of reading aloud
Don’ts of Reading Aloud
  • Read books you don’t enjoy yourself!
  • Continue a book if it is a poor choice
  • Select books children have seen on television
  • Be fooled by awards (they don’t guarantee good read alouds)
  • Confuse quantity with quality
reading the book
Reading the Book
  • Preview the book – discuss the cover
  • Talk about the author and illustrator
  • Talk about the front, back, and spine of the book
  • Take a picture walk
  • Introduce new concepts or vocabulary
  • Read the story completely!
  • Discuss the story
  • Reread the story and talk about the book
discussing the book
Discussing the Book
  • Research shows that the discussion that happens during and after the reading is more important than the reading itself
  • Some questions for discussion during the reading:
    • How do you think the character feels?
    • What will happen next?
    • Why did the character act that way?
    • What is happening in this picture?
discussing the book19
Discussing the Book
  • Some questions for discussion after the reading:
    • What was your favorite part of the book and why?
    • Did you like how the book ended; why or why not?
    • What do you think would happen after the story ended?
    • If you could write a new ending, what would happen?
the best books for family reading
The Best Books for Family Reading…
  • Award winning books (but not always)
  • Attractive covers
  • Beautiful illustrations
  • Good, rich vocabulary
  • Interesting characters
  • Defined plot
  • May include humor
  • Help children solve problems in their lives
teaching children to care for books
Teaching Children to Care for Books
  • Model, model, MODEL!
    • Demonstrate how to pick up a book, how to hold it, and handle it. Teach your child that you value books and he or she will do the same.
  • Allow your child to practice.
    • The only way children can learn to be responsible when holding and caring for books is by handling books!
  • Involve your child in developing book handling rules.
    • “We handle the books with our clean hands.”
    • “We turn the pages gently.”

“Being able to handle books independently allows children to “read” the books themselves, using words they remember from being read to. These activities improve verbal abilities. Children who are not allowed to handle books will be far less likely to seek out books for entertainment or information.”

and above all

Have FUN!!!

suggested sources
Suggested Sources
  • Book Lists for Reading Aloud

Children’s Literacy Initiative (Click “Professional Development” to find book lists)


(“A Literacy Training Film with Al Roker” for parent meetings)