As educators, we are always looking for new ways to help children learn to love reading. We know the joy it can bring kids and have a desire to help all children feel that love for reading.
Some children come to us with a book always in hand and loving reading. Others come to us and need help building that love of books. Sometimes these children haven’t been exposed to books at home. Other times, parents have tried and tried to help their children love reading without success. For either group of children, new approaches are sometimes the key to helping.
We recently were introduced to a feature offered on Amazon.com. Audible an Amazon company is encouraging new readers with immersion reading. This feature adds narration that we believe could be great for some students learning to read. Independent reading in the classroom is a time when students who are nonreaders often become disengaged and aren’t practicing the skills they need to be practicing. It can be difficult for students who find reading hard to read for an extended period of time. After looking at Audible, we feel that this can help with those students. For a variety of books you download for your kindle, you can also download the audio companion. What we like about this addition is that it not only reads the text, it also highlights the words, these combined features are something that Amazon and Audible refer to as Immersion Reading. This is a great way for students who are learning to read to connect what they are hearing to the words they arereading. If you are looking to persuade administrators and parents about the benefits of this feature, be sure to check out this article, For Kids with Reading Challenges, Just Add Listening.
If you are going to give it a try at one of your centers or during independent reading time, the steps to set up are easy:
- Buy the Kindle book
- Add audio companion
- Switch between reading and listening on the Kindle App or tablet
Another feature that we like about Audible is that the narration speed can be altered. What a great feature for when you want to make sure your emerging readers are carefully looking at each word as it is read!
We were excited to see that one of our favorite read alouds, Harriet the Spy, is available. Even though it’s an older book, we find that many of our students become engaged in the book as it is read aloud. Offering it as an option during independent reading time with audio companion, might hook some of your students who are typically not engaged during all of their reading time. A favorite series we found is The Land of Stories – this would be ideal for third -fifth grade students who are not strong readers but want to read texts matching that of their peers.
If you are like us, you are always looking for new exit tickets for independent reading. We have created a collection of bookmarks that you can add to what you use. There are four different versions so you can easily differentiate for different students or just pick the version that fits the needs of your class best. In case you like the format but would like students to complete different tasks or reflections, we are also providing the PowerPoint file so you may edit as needed. You will need to download the KG Beneath Your Beautiful font. We have a commercial use license but you can download the free version for your personal use.
We hope you love the idea of using Audible in the classroom as much as we do. Be sure to take a look and download your favorite children’s book to test this feature – Amazon is even offering a free 30-day trial with download so you can test it this summer to see the benefits. We would love for you to share titles you see that you think others should try below.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Audible. The opinions and text are all mine.