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Best Read-Alouds

Best Read-Alouds Grades EC - 8

Stories are a natural way to share ideas and teachings. Indigenous peoples embrace story as a way of understanding and teaching about the world. Furthermore, stories are essential components of literacy development and language appreciation. They can be entertaining, though-provoking, inspiring and humourous. Some stories are remembered by children for the rest of their lives.

Read-aloud is an incredibly versatile teaching strategy. There is no end of beautiful books to share with audiences of all ages and for many purposes. The lists on the left are designed to highlight some titles that are particularly suited to various age ranges. The links below include the sources these lists were compiled from. They also include techniques and other supports for using read-aloud effectively. 

This guide is based on Bill Glaister's work in establishing a collection of "Best Read-Alouds" in the Curriculum Lab. As with all components of our literature collection, we are grateful for the generous support of the Wigham Family.

These Read Aloud Lists were consulted: 

5 Things To Remember Every Time You Read Aloud

5 Things to Remember Every Time You Read Aloud

EYE CONTACT: You MUST look up and make eye contact with your students in order to keep them engaged! Practice doing it as much as you can.

PACE: You are not reading to “get through” the text; you are creating an experience!!! Most readers start out going too fast. Slow down and enjoy the language.

PAUSE: Let the meaning soak in. Take a breath and look at the children. Pausing is highly effective.

EXPRESSION: Add some variety to your pitch and pace. Author Mem Fox (2001) describes expression as vocal gymnastics: high and low, loud and soft, fast and slow.

ARTICULATION: You’ll want to model good speech while also making sure students hear all of the words clearly.

INVOLVEMENT: It is OK to pause and point out aspects of the illustrations, or to ask some questions. Open-ended questions (what do you think about…., What do you think might happen…) will require the deepest thinking. Respect the flow of the story and look for good places to pause. 

 

Reference:

Mem Fox. Reading Magic: Why Reading Aloud to Our Children Will Change Their Lives Forever. Harcourt, Inc: San Diego, CA. 2001.  Retrieved from http://www.rif.org/kids/leadingtoreading/en/grown-ups/articles/memfoxtech.htm

Sample Read Aloud