Benefits of Reading Aloud to Your Child

Children love to be read to and there are many educational benefits from reading aloud to your child at home.  Even upper-elementary aged children, tweens, and teens, can also benefit from being read aloud to at home.  Reading books aloud help children to build their background knowledge, develop vocabulary skills, and make meaningful connections.  It can also lead to discussions on connecting the plot of the story to situations in their own lives.  Books can help introduce life lessons that can spur at home discussion about difficult topics or can be used as a bonding time with your child.

Benefits of Reading Aloud to Your Child

How to Pick a Book to Read Aloud to Your Child

When picking a book to read aloud with your child, there are several things that you should look for first. There should be a good flow of the language, it should be relevant to the child, and it should expose the child to new vocabulary and ideas that may be slightly above their ability to read on their own.  If you are not comfortable reading aloud to your child, try reading the book yourself first and practice reading it aloud.  Then, you will feel more comfortable reading the book aloud with your child.

When choosing a book, give your child options.  Do not force them to read a book that they may not be interested in.  However, once they make the choice, make a very strong effort to read the book from cover to cover even if the child may not be interested in the first chapter or two.  It takes time to develop a story and a child may need several chapters to become engaged in the book.  However, if you do realize that the book is not going over well, don’t force the issue, stop reading, and then choose a more engaging book.

There are many online lists that provide lists of great books to read aloud with your child.  Here are a few links to get your started.

  1. Books to Read Aloud with Children Twelve and Older
  2. The Read-Aloud Challenge Book List
  3. One More Chapter – Great Books to Read Aloud to Your Kids

Reading Curriculum and Reading Games by Smart Tutor

Article By Laura VanHellemont

Photo By sean dreilinger

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