The Practice of Oral Reading

Practice_Oral_ReadingI’m sure we all encourage our children to read. Silently. But, how much time is spent on reading aloud? Oral fluency seems to be necessary for good comprehension and an enjoyable reading experience.¹ If we aren’t already doing so, adding oral reading to our homeschooling routine might be of benefit.

Since their births, we have tried to instill a love of reading in our kids. Even before they could understand, we would read to them or read in front of them. However, reading to them isn’t enough. I want to make sure that as my children are growing, they are also reading to me.

There are some great ways to encourage oral reading. We can model how to read; ideally with us reading fluently to our children. We can read often; every day I make time to read with each child and have them read to me. We can read as a group; our family could memorize a poem and say it together.

What makes a good reader? One indication they are doing well, is that they are reading with expression; they will sound happy when it is called for and sad when necessary. Another pointer is that they are reading without struggling.

If you are looking for a great way to incorporate oral reading into your homeschool learning day, look no further than your book basket! If you care to find something a little more formal, I would highly recommend McGuffey’s Eclectic Readers

The key is to read at least once a day, preferably reading the same passage throughout the week. This might seem boring at first, but the repetition is important. Reading the same words over and over, builds fluency and helps your child become comfortable with the text. After a day or so, your child will be less anxious about the words; focusing more on expression and delivery.

When children read out loud, we can better detect their struggles and offer them positive feedback; helping them complete their learning goals. This is especially important for children who are already struggling with reading, giving them the help they need to be stronger readers.

Our children’s education will flourish when they are fluent readers. Fluency may seem out of reach, but it can be achieved. With consistent practice and constant encouragement, our children will ultimately reach their goal.

📢 Chime In!: Does oral fluency play a part in your homeschooling day? How do you find ways to encourage your child to read aloud?

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12 thoughts on “The Practice of Oral Reading

  1. Reading aloud is definitely part of our daily routine! I believe it also helps in memorization of information, so if there is a lengthy piece in any given subject, many times we will read it aloud just to kind of make it “stick”. I believe it’s becoming a lost art, so thanks for posting!

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  2. Pingback: Another kind of ‘Once upon a time …’ | Ms Barb, CEO of Barb's Books

  3. Reading aloud develops your abilities in a different way than reading silently. I think it’s a great thing to do, as you said. Reading aloud has always been a part of my daughter’s bedtime routine. Now that she’s a teen, she does the reading to us! She reads one chapter of the bible to us each night before we have family prayer time. We started in Genesis and are now in Isaiah. 🙂

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  4. I got lazy about it over the years and now some of the words, my teens really mess up. I think this year we will read aloud for a bit each day just so I see where they are. Hopefully it’s not too late for my teens!

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  5. I take turns reading pages of books with my 8 year old. I had y considered the need for repetition, although we do get some of that when we do poetry. I think I will incorporate more repetition. Thanks for this.

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  6. Reading out loud has been a big part of our home education platform. We do spelling lists and create sentences based on words from those lists. The process we follow for this is: “look, say, cover, write, check.” On top of that we do worship songs every morning. I hand out lyric sheets to everyone for them to read/sing along. Then the kids will take turns in reading the chapter of the book from the bible we’re moving through. I also do what you guys are doing. I pick 5 non-fiction books from our monthly visit to the library. The kids will read a chapter out loud to me and then write a short recount of it. We don’t always do this every day, but I’ve found that it outperforms most curriculums we have access to. For example: we’ve done some general science this way; at the moment we’re studying Australian explorers. The kids have really thrown themesleves into the subjects. I think it’s because they aren’t being fed information, but are actually feeling like they’re participating in the story. The other reading out loud we do is on news day. Using a major Wednesday paper, I’ll cut out and allocate articles that are suitable to interest and ability. Each child will read through their article, highlight some key points – looking mainly for nouns and verbs – and then Present the article in front of everyone else. Something they’ve taken to calling, jokingly, “a muppet newsflash” 😜😜😜 This takes about an hour and is a ton of fun, with heaps of learning outcomes included. In recent weeks we’ve covered Pokemon Go, The Olympics, a sinkhole, the new samsung phone, a Chinese man who got stuck in Germany, Minecraft, Pizza companies, jet packs, the price of chocolate going up because of cocoa supply levels (and the list goes on). It’s rarely the same thing over and over again.

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