I decided to build my website around the art of storytelling (in the sense of reading classic stories to an audience) because it creates a special bond between the reader and the listener. The reader, with only words and the passion of her voice, is helping the listener create their own special version of a story, with their own specific images from their own imaginations. No two listeners will ever have the same experience hearing a story because each listener is an active participant in its creation. It’s the difference between watching a baseball game on TV and going outside and playing your own game. Unless you get beaned in the head by a line drive, odds are creating your own game will be more fun, memorable and fulfilling than just watching someone else’s creation. And that’s why I am celebrating National Audiobook Month!
- They help to build vocabulary
- They develop & hone comprehension
- They strengthen listening skills
- It's a great family activity
- They can help create wonderful conversation afterwards.
A recent study by The Milken Family Foundation underlines how educational programs that "included the use of audiobooks improved children's reading proficiency more than programs that did not use them."
I have my own proof too - this was in the last newsletter from my friends at Tales2GO. Third grade teacher, Ashley Alicia, at W.J. Gurganus Elementary School in Havelock, NC began using Tales2Go last fall after she won it in my Be-a-Famous Writer contest. Here's what she had to report, after a school year with Tales2Go:
"End of year reading benchmarks indicate that 18 of my 21 students met or exceeded fluency requirements for 3rd grade (i.e., 100 Words Read Correct (WRC) per minute, and the other three were at 97 WRC). In comparison, 76% of 3rd graders at my school are proficient or higher for fluency, with 8% being far below grade level expectations. My children's retell ability skyrocketed! Not only can 100% of my students adequately retell a story that was read with detail and in sequential order, but on average, tripled the required 30 word limit. I attribute their success and new found literacy skills to Tales2Go." ... and their really awesome teacher!
You can find audiobooks at bookstores, online, and at your local library, where you'll be able to borrow or download selections with your library card.
I have a whole collection of my audiobooks at Tales2Go. Tales2Go is an award-winning kids' mobile audiobook service that streams thousands of name-brand titles from leading publishers and storytellers to mobile devices and desktops in the classroom and beyond. I love that they work with schools. They have won so many awards I have lost count! They are also a sponsor of my annual writing contest!
So, Listen UP & celebrate National Audiobook Month this June!