The Children's Book Compass

Tips on Making the Read Aloud Experience Effective

Posted on: January 21, 2010

“The single most important activity for building the knowledge required for eventual success in reading is reading aloud to children.”       Becoming a Nation of Readers

  • Read aloud to your students every day.
  • Emphasize the enjoyment of the read aloud time.
  • Plan a regular reading time when the children are ready to be engaged.
  • Select the material to read carefully keeping in mind the interests and developmental levels of your students.
  • Vary the kinds of materials to read, include a wide variety of genres, and topics.  Also, share selections from newspapers, the Internet  and magazines.
  • Keep poetry anthologies, riddle and joke books handy to bring out when there are extra minutes to read aloud.
  • Read with expression and animation.
  • Prepare the students for the reading by introducing the story, inviting predictions and making any needed explanations.
  • Remember the discussion about the reading is an important part of the read aloud experience.  Open-ended questions will launch a discussion.  i.e. What will you remember about the reading?  What connections did you make with the reading?  What did you like or not like about the reading?  How was the story different or the same as the predictions you made before we read?
  • Consult The Read-Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease for more ideas about reading aloud.  Or, look at

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