Did you know that audiobooks “count” as reading in our Summer Reading Program? That’s because librarians know something you might not; Listening isn’t cheating! There are great benefits to hearing stories read aloud. Audiobooks can help your child become a better reader.
• Hearing a book read aloud helps the story come alive. The narrators are very skilled with voices, sound effects, and dramatic emphasis. For example, actress Anne Hathaway narrates The Princess Diaries. An audiobook might be the perfect way to hook your reluctant reader into books.
• Your child might be able to listen to a story that is more complex than he can read on his own. This will help him develop listening and comprehension skills, as well as introduce him to new vocabulary words and help stretch his imagination.
• How many times does your child hear the word, “façade” in everyday conversation? If he sees it in a book, will he be able to pronounce it correctly? Listening to audiobooks helps with pronunciation. It also helps improve understanding. What does it mean when a character responds “ruefully?” An audiobook can express the meaning of this word.
• Audiobooks provide a model of fluent reading and engaging storytelling. Listening to a great story read aloud gives children an example of how to become a better reader and can motivate them to read more.
To choose a great audiobook for your child or for your family to listen to together, ask a librarian for suggestions or visit the American Library’s Association’s award page for audiobooks. Enjoy!