I love audiobooks and consider them one of the most powerful tools to helping your child love reading, especially if you’re a busy family!
Here are eight reasons why audiobooks are as close to a magic wand as you can get for raising a reader:
- They can usually listen at a much higher level than they can read. Your child might be reading at a kindergarten or 1st grade level, but they can probably listen to something much more advanced (just like a kindergarten teacher might read aloud a Roald Dahl book that your kindergartener would have a hard time reading alone).
- It makes reading a fun activity for kids that struggle with reading. If you’re a struggling reader, it’s hard to ever get to the parts of reading that are actually fun (most of us that love to read don’t love it because of the decoding and phonics part . . . ), like the story itself. I love that audiobooks mean kids can have positive reading experiences even when they’re struggling with their reading skills.
- Audiobooks help them develop the skills for more advanced reading. Reading involves more skills than just the technical ability to sound out words, and audiobooks give kids practice in reading skills like keeping track of characters and following a story arc.
- For a wiggly child, it can be easier to listen than to read. Reading is a pretty stationary activity, but with an audiobook, they can build with Legos, paint, or just run laps around the room. I remember braiding my sisters’ hair endless or painting our nails while my mom read to us at night. My girls love building with Legos or coloring as they listen.
- It can help launch independent reading. If your child listens to the first couple of books in a series, it’s much easier to transfer to the paper version later on, since they are now familiar with the setting, characters, and basic format of the book.
- Following along with the text while the audiobook plays helps build fluency without slowing down the story. Your child gets a lot of opportunity to see the word, move quickly through text, and practice sight words. Or just look at the pictures.
- Audiobooks can teach great vocabulary. I love lots of easy readers and early chapter books, but the vocabulary usually just isn’t as rich as books at a higher level. Audiobooks introduce a much wider vocabulary than books they can read on their own, and also teaches pronunciation so when they come across those words on their own later, they know what it should sound like.
- You can use them to spend quality time together in the car. I love listening to audiobooks as a family when we’re on a road trip or just running errands. There are so many books I want to read with my girls and we’ll never get through them all with me reading aloud, so this helps us share some of the other books I don’t want to miss out on.
Have you tried audiobooks with your child?
Let me know if you have any questions and I’d love to help you and your child get started!