When was the last time you heard a story? Hearing a story read aloud is a different experience than reading it to yourself. A wonderful part of my position is reading, listening and reviewing children’s books for volunteers to utilize in the Oasis Tutoring program.
In our office, we occasionally have “read aloud meetings” or as one of my colleagues like to say, “Story hour with Mary.” I am excited about sharing the book because of the story, the illustrations and lessons. My colleagues gather in my office and I read a few titles. Depending on the story, these read aloud meetings can promote rich discussions about why or why not the book should become part of the Oasis Tutoring curriculum provided to partnering school districts. They also bring laughter and joy to the day! (I think everyone could use a little more laughter and joy.)
Sometimes, Oasis Tutoring Facilitators ask me to participate in their tutor enrichment meetings and I read aloud to Oasis Tutors. Other times, school district staff introduces books to tutors and me by reading them aloud. It is obvious Oasis Tutors enjoy this experience as much as I do.
Here is a short list of books I’ve heard or read aloud and enjoyed recently:
- “Hanks’ Big Day, the story of a bug” by Evan Kuhlman & Chuck Groenink
- “CeCe Loves Science” by Kimberly Derting and Shlli R. Johannes
- “Where Oliver Fits” by Cole Atkinson
- “I Am Human” by Susan Verde
- “I Just Want to Say Good Night” by Rachel Isadora
- “Saturday” by Oge Mora
- “What Do You Do With An Idea?” by Kobi Yamada
- “If Kids Ran the World” by Leo & Diane Dillion
When Oasis Tutors read aloud to their students, the student hears new vocabulary, adds new concepts to their memories, understands sentence structure and gathers information about life experiences.
The more we read loud, the more fluent and expressive story tellers we become, making the story come alive. The fluency, inflection and expression demonstrated by the reader generates excitement and joy in reading for students. Although the students Oasis Tutors work with probably do not realize it, hearing a book read aloud to them is a priceless gift.
Celebrate World Read Aloud Day with me. All you need to do is select a book, find a friend and start reading. I have already selected one of my favorite books to celebrate the day!