Reading aloud provides benefits for all ages. This is one of the best learning tools for teaching youth and illiterate adults the basic language skills. Experts say that the activity develops reading and writing habits early on in children that will help them later on in life. Additionally, this strengthens the linguistic abilities of literate grown-ups.
For children to learn a language, they must know the sounds. This ability is known as their phonological awareness. The prepubescent must also know the alphabet accompanying that language, so as to convert written words into spoken ones. Reach Out and Read said that parents could bring this about by reading aloud and rhyming to their infant. This allows them to be able to pick out phonemes, syllables, and rhymes easily.
After a child has learned the alphabet and sounds, the parent can help the prepubescent form mental connections between the two by reading aloud, said Reach Out and Read. This allows the youth to understand the link between what they read and speak.
Reading aloud to a child then helps them understand the way sentences are formed and the meanings of them. On top of that, it significantly increases the vocabulary of the youth. That is because good children’s books hold 50 percent more rare words than TV or college conversations, according to Reach Out and Read, and reading aloud can help children learn.
Instead of letting them watch TV, reading aloud to children before bedtime can help them develop sleeping patterns and build self-esteem. This can also aid the adult and the prepubescent in increasing both of their attention spans.
Reading Aloud Helps Grasp Complex Ideas
As people grow older, their ideas generally become more complex. Thus, the thoughts will be harder to express without a vast vocabulary. Others’ writing or speech will also be much harder for the child to understand when they have not learned the words that everybody else is using.
Not being able to understand others’ ideas fully will frustrate anyone, especially when the person is so close to knowing what the speaker or the writer is talking. There will be patches in the reader’s knowledge, and, at times, it is better to know either all or none of a certain subject. That is because knowing will give the person the impression that they fully understand a certain topic, yet do not. Thus, they will not be spurred to read more on that topic because they believe they had already learned all about it. Then again, a person cannot always learn every minute detail about a certain issue. Still, he or she will know that they do not understand all in that area and will strive to understand the whole topic. Reading aloud can then help bring about the will to learn in a child.
Reading Aloud Proven Effective
At three years old children from professional families heard about 2,153 words per hour, those in working class ones heard approximately 1,251, and kids from welfare families heard 616. The prepubescents also had 1100, 750, and 500-word vocabularies respectively.
The book issued by the Literacy Information and Communication System says that teachers should assess adults on their phonemic awareness by having the grown-ups read aloud. It goes further to say that teachers can evaluate reading fluency with written tests and reading aloud. Here, the student recites a passage multiple times, and the teacher provides feedback.
Although Reach Out and Read encourages reading aloud, the types of books read will differ in the benefits they offer. A child may read a hundred Dr. Suess books but will never attain the knowledge or vocabulary they would receive from reading one Charles Dickens book. So, reading aloud may benefit all ages, but the benefits depend on the types of books the people read.
This difference in reading aloud occurs mainly between literary novels or poems and all other genres of books. That is because the writers of these two areas strive to employ as many words and ideologies as possible to achieve an effect. Other genres use various techniques too but not to the extent of a good literary novel or poem. Therefore, to nudge a child into loving writing, one must give them simple books on topics they enjoy first, said Reach Out and Read. Then the parent should let the prepubescent have literary novels because they are usually more complex.
That last point on reading aloud can be reiterated by Reach Out and Read’s two parental styles of reading. It calls the first the performance-oriented style and the second the describer style. The former deals with discussing the story’s meaning, meanwhile, the latter focuses on depicting pictures.
Reach Out and Read carried out an experiment in response to the subsistent amount of low-income parents reading aloud to their children. Here, it gave parents a children’s book. It found that the parents were four times more likely to have looked at the books with their children. The parents began reading aloud to their young three or more days in the week. Some disregard reading aloud as a child’s activity. It may be so, but the evidence proves that reading aloud benefits all ages.
Opinion News by Osveen Funwi
Edited by Cathy Milne
Reach Out & Read: Reading aloud to children: the
Literacy Information and Communication System: Teaching Adults to read
www.trelease-on-reading.com: WHY READ ALOUD TO CHILDREN?
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