|Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash|
There certainly is authenticity to bringing in books and texts learners would want to read. It makes the work real - and enjoyable. However, I was reminded yesterday, as we walked into a fifth grade classroom to find students spread around the room listening to their teacher read, of the power of just reading aloud. Students were all around the room as the teachers voice carefully shaped the words in the story. Some were laying on the floor, some on stools, and some nestled tightly around their teacher. The students were spellbound and didn't even to seem to notice as we entered. It was just after lunch and the story seemed to be pulling the community back together in shared experience; the teachers words sometimes creating audible gasps as they listened to the new chapter together.
In many classrooms, it isn't be uncommon to have 3-5 read alouds in any given day. Teachers find time to read from a variety of texts to support the learning happening in their communities. In all of those opportunities to read aloud, we want a portion of that time to be just reading aloud. Just peeling the layers of story. Just letting the words whisper into the ears of all those listening. Just letting the story sink into the hearts of the listeners gathered together. There should always be a time to just read aloud. Every day.
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