The Pleasures of Reading Aloud…

The Wizard of Oz, by second grader, I.P.

I don’t have a strong voice, but I love to read aloud to my second graders.  The pleasure of reading aloud started with my own children and sharing the many many books we read aloud as a family. When I first started my career, I was most interested in teaching at the 6th grade level because of the wonderful literature for that particular age group. However, there is equally wonderful literature for every age and grade level, and the joy of reading aloud to young people is the same no matter what level you teach.

 When I read aloud to my students I don’t do all the voices (I wish I had that kind of talent), but I do put a lot of expression into my reading, and the kids appreciate that. What I love is to look at the faces of my students (young or old) as I read to them, to see their rapt attention, their involvement in the story, their anticipation of the next sentence. And I dearly love to see their faces when I read the final words of a particularly wonderful book … as I did this week with The Wizard of Oz. My class broke into spontaneous applause, not for me, but for the book. It was a joy to share it with them!

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10 thoughts on “The Pleasures of Reading Aloud…

  1. Jessica

    I just love love love reading out loud. My kids love it when I read to them. Husband, not so much. I get a good two seconds of attention out of him, then he is over it. But it is so much fun isn’t it? I love to change voices for characters too!

    Oh, I want to go home and read to the boys now!

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  2. Kristen M.

    My son is finally letting me read aloud to him at bedtime (he used to only want to read to himself) and chose James and the Giant Peach for our first story. I can’t do the same voices every night but I attempt something for each character and it’s such a joy when my Aunt Spiker makes him laugh out loud every night!

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  3. Chris

    You know I’ve never read The Wizard of Oz…but I’ve always wanted to! Those drawings are fantastic!! I wish I had people to read aloud to..Maybe I can do that with some of my counseling. I’ve said this many times before Robin, but you’re one hell of an awesome teacher 🙂

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  4. Bellezza

    I love reading to my kids! It’s got to be one of our favorite times of the day, for them and for me. I read The Tale of Despereaux with a French accent (those six years of French came in handy somewhere!), and they loved it. I think this is such an excellent way to teach reading: vocabulary, character analysis, prediction, plot, inferences, everything is there! I’d love to listen to you read.

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  5. Les in NE

    It’s been a while since I’ve read to any children. I used to read to my nieces all the time when I was their nanny. Last time I read aloud to a child was when we were visiting our granddaughter and we got to be the surprise readers in her kindergarten class. I read Snow Day by Lester Laminack. They loved it almost as much as I did! 🙂

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  6. Robin Post author

    Jessica, I wish I could do different voices. Some people are so wonderful at that!

    Kristen, I remember it took a long time before our kids would sit for a chapter book, even though we read many, many picture books to them. It was such a pleasure to reach the chapter books stage!

    Thanks, Chris. I think you would have liked to be a second (or sixth) grader in my class … just ’cause of the all the reading we do together! But Bellezza can do the reading with French accents and cool voices, so you would have Loved being in her class!

    Bellezza, I love that you did Despereaux with a French accent! I know your students absolutely love your read alouds.

    Bybee, that is such a nice thing to say about your 6th grade teacher. I think she’d be thrilled to know that you remember her that way.

    Amy, that is such a special thing to be able to see the impact of reading on her face. How nice for her to have a sister that will read to her! I would have given an arm and a leg for such a sister (I had 3 very nice brothers, but desperately wanted a sister!).

    Les, I know I will miss reading to students when I finally retire! How fun to be a surprise reader in your granddaughter’s class. What a special thing for her!

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  7. Tara

    What a wonderful post! I read a book to my daughter’s class and it’s so rewarding to watch their little faces rapt with attention.

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