+ Notes | Journey of Reading Aloud
Honestly, reading aloud was never a strong suit for me. I was always terrified when I would be asked to read something to a group. I still prefer to read silently and would just sit with babies looking at a book but allowed myself to remain pretty silent. Finally, I read the studies about how reading aloud to children can impact their future AND our society.
Rabbit Hole Moment: Did you know that when decisions about jails are made 3rd grade reading scores are used as a guide!?!?! Yes! I was blown away but this. Talk with me Baby has all the amazing resources and research about this.
First, there is the “word gap” : The more I read - the more I wanted to find ways to increase the word usage in every child and family I meet. At the end of the day, reading aloud makes the most sense especially when talking to your newborn baby feels like you are going to be committed. Reading gives you a starting point to build vocabulary and communication awareness for your baby.
Second, you are building habit : This might be the most important part. Habit building is a crucial aspect of parenting that we think of but do not associate it with newborns. Many people think of a habit as something that is good, bad, or hard to start. We all have some type of a habit and some of us (ME!) want to improve upon our habits. When you break it down, a habit is something “settled or regular tendency or practice, especially one that is hard to give up.” The best way to build literary and large vocabulary is by developing the habit of reading.
We all come to parenting with great intentions of reading at a few books at night before bed or cuddling up on the couch to read. This is a beautiful picture and it does happen yet sometimes in the overwhelming times of parenting we forget. I’ll tell you the way this happens in my house is stacks and baskets filled with books all over the place, by the couch, bed, bathroom (yep! great tip for potty learning), and in the car. Another huge reading aloud learning curve was not needing to finish the book at every sitting. Littles have short attention spans so place a bookmark in it to come back later when they want or for the older ones leave them on a really goood cliff hanger since you probably need to go finish prepping dinner. I even remember staying up late as a young child reading just to see “what happened next”.
I shop the display books at our library when I am feeling overwhelmed by options.
Sarah Mackenzie, Read- ALoud Revival, has an extensive book list suggestion, even broken down by months!
Now that I have told you how amazing reading aloud is even for this timid reader …. here are some of our tried and true favorites that my son and I devoured. These are in no order at all.