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Sunday, April 14, 2019

My 5 Top Tips for Shared Reading

I’ve written a number of times previously about shared reading and ways to infuse read-aloud time with language skills and meaning.  So today I thought I’d reiterate some of my top ideas for using shared reading.

  1. First of all, READ.  Good books. All kinds of books. Fiction and nonfiction. Funny books and meaningful books.  Enrichment books, which have interesting text which is supported by illustrations, provide students with experiences they might not otherwise have, can offer them characters they can relate to and places that feel familiar. They can also provide a window to activities the child might not be able to do himself.
  2. Storybooks can be relatable because of their characters, setting, or problem with which the child may be familiar.  They teach the child about the relationship between characters and settings, the steps to solving a problem, and the story elements of plot sequences.
  3. Nonfiction books can provide valuable information, teach concepts, and give access to topics the child might not be able to see, touch, or feel otherwise. Informational texts introduce children to things in the world around them.
  4. Talk about the book while you’re reading.  Point out illustration details.  Ask questions about key concepts or story details. Talk about vocabulary. Describe characters and settings.  Predict solutions.
  5. Retell the story.  Practice this retelling with the child.  Use visuals or the illustrations to support the retelling.  Extend the story by having the child “write” or co-create his own stories that use the same basic story structure as a book he likes, but with the personal connection of himself as the character or his environment as the setting, or his experiences as plot lines.  Children love books about themselves, so create his own personal bookshelf of familiar stories.  Experiences with which he is familiar become easy-to-tell stories.

Read it! What’s life without a good book?  And…….keep on talking - about books.