By: Meghan Randig, M.A., CCC-SLP
It’s time to take advantage of access to audiobooks, especially for our young, struggling readers. We know that reading is a primary access point for acquiring knowledge and building vocabulary. For readers who are decoding at lower levels than their classmates, audiobooks are a great tool for students to participate in reading without missing out on the subjects, topics, and vocabulary that their same-grade peers are participating in. If reading is a challenge, or if a child has a diagnosis of dyslexia, audiobooks are a great option!
Benefits of Utilizing Audiobooks
Audiobooks may be a gateway for students to actually enjoy the idea of reading too! The pressure to decode new words is eliminated, and students can focus on their comprehension and receptive language skills. While listening to an audiobook, students are receiving verbal models for changes in inflection (questions vs exclamations), reading rate, and pacing skills (pauses between sentences or dialogue).
Readers can focus in on visualizing the story or text, which expands on their ability to associate a visual representation to the language they hear. The ability to create a mental image for what you hear is an essential skill for learning. Audiobooks can give students access to reading material that matches their intellectual curiosity and interests.
Benefits of Utilizing Text-to-Speech
Text-to-speech software, as used in audiobooks, is a common and useful accommodation for many students throughout their academic experiences. Students can use text-to-speech software to follow along with texts that are at their current reading level. Some software highlights the words that are being read, allowing students to practice following along with their finger. Text-to-speech technology levels the playing field for many students who are spending more energy on decoding, rather than comprehending, new information.
Where Do I Find Audiobooks?
Audiobooks can be accessed through a number of portals, including Audible, Apple Books, Scribd, and Spotify. Take the time to show your child how they can listen to their favorite topics and authors via audiobooks. Now, just grab your favorite set of headphones and let your ears do some reading for you!
Enrichment Therapy & Learning Center has locations in the Iowa City, IA area and Des Moines, IA area. We provide individual speech-language therapy and tutoring as well as offering small group academic programs. At Enrichment Therapy & Learning Center our passion is to help kids achieve effective communication skills and gain academic success. Contact us for more information on how we can help your child succeed.
740 Community Drive, Unit A
North Liberty, IA 52317
5530 West Pkwy, Suite 300
Johnston, IA 50131