The Next Generations of Readers

The Next Generations of Readers

Is reading becoming phased out?  My six year old is learning  his sight words and can read basic sentences and very short stories, with help.  Last summer while playing a version of Banana Grams with Poppy, he proudly spelled a word B R B.  His Poppy told him that was not a word and he responded by saying, "Yes, It's Be Right Back."

Apparently kids today are learning abbreviations before they learns WORDS. To encourage reading,  I allow my boy to choose books from the school book fair and he picks Captain Underpants and Spongebob Square Pants.  The words in these books are slang (am I sounding old yet) and the concepts are bizarre. 

I am very careful not to force my child to be a certain person that he isn't.  I don't want to insist he chooses books that I like; I want him to find his interests (underpants?) in stories that appeal him.  Of course, we read many old classics and a ton of Dr. Seuss.  Part of the wonder of being a kid is the silly fantasy of reading and encouraging them to use their imagination.

I'm the first to admit that reading takes up a very small percent of my time these days.  Sure I read emails, articles, blogs and text messages. 

Instead of resisting the reality that reading is evolving, I'm hoping I can continue to read my family good stories.  What were your favorite books as a kid?  What books do your kids gravitate towards now?




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    Yes, audio books can be something else we can pull out of our bag of “tricks” to help our reluctant readers. But they're not tricks, really – just ways we want to help them discover the joy of reading that will hopefully last a lifetime.

    Here are a couple of ways to use audiobooks to get your sons and daughters interested in reading:

    Pair Books with Unabridged Audio Books: Look for both formats at your library or bookstore, then experiment and choose the best strategy that works for your child:
    Follow the book as the audio book plays. This helps with word recognition and awareness of phrasing; or
    Listen to a chapter, and then read it. This helps students understand main ideas before they are read, which can improve fluency; or
    Read a chapter and then listen to it to self-check for understanding.
    Create Their Own Books on Tape: Make your children the stars of their own audio books! Have them read into a tape recorder. During playback, help them follow along in the book and help identify errors. You can stop the tape and demonstrate correct words and phrases. Some research has indicated that as your children listen to themselves and hear their own reading growing better, their skills will likely improve. Reward children for the errors they find and correct as well as for their successes.

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