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Do you have your DC read aloud to you?

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If so, how often and for how long?


My DS (almost 10 and getting ready to embark on his first year of hs in the Fall) is a reluctant reader. I have been having him read aloud to me for about 20 minutes per night (we just began this about 1 month ago) and he clearly dislikes it. He often skips lines, adds words to the text and mispronounces many words. He loves when I read to him and he does read occasionally on his own and narrates back to me.


Thoughts and/or suggestions for us?


Blessings, Lisa

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Absolutely. My boys read aloud from the McGuffey Eclectic readers from 1st to 4th grade. They read one lesson at a time which takes anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes (if that long) at least twice a week. We would finish the reader over the course of our school year.


In addition, the CW series has the student read and narrate the model each week. We would do this also, and once they hit 5th grade, I would stop the readers and just continue with CW once a week.


Our boys also read aloud from the Bible during our family devotional times; we'll continue this until they leave home.


I think you might be having your son read aloud too long at one sitting. I really wouldn't do more than 10 minutes at a time, and even that can be exhaustive. I usually pick one thing that I would like for them to work on during our read aloud session (stopping at the periods, not mumbling, reading slowly, reading all the words, etc.). Once they showed mastery in the area that I was focusing on, I generally stopped the read aloud unless they wanted to continue. I have one son who loves to read aloud (or just talk in general); he can go on forever. But my other son doesn't really like it. As long as he shows improvement, then I don't push him to read beyond the goal I've set for that lesson.


If you want him to read more during the day, then I would break it up into three 5 to7-minute segments: one in the morning, one in the afternoon, and one at night. I wouldn't do this everyday though. Once or twice a week is probably enough. One second thought, if you want more read aloud time, I would probably do a 5-7 minute lesson each day.



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My boys are 8th and 9th grade; they still do read aloud to me -- but we do it together, "popcorn reading" style ("you read a page, I read a page"). At this age, we don't do it all the time -- but do it for books that are above their level, or if it's a book we want to go in depth on in discussion. The benefits to child reading aloud:


- practice intonation, emotion, smoothness (great public speaking skills!)

- get to learn/discuss vocabulary in context

- it's great family time!

- encourages the child to stick with a book that they might otherwise give up on


Enjoy your aloud reading times together! Warmest regards, Lori D.

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If I'm not looking, she tends to skip words she does not immediately recognize in order to keep the flow going. (She is really, really good at this, and you can't tell that she is doing it unless you are watching or know the book by heart, LOL.)


Since she is a great reader and good at reading aloud, and since she is 11 1/2, we don't do this all that often. But once or twice a week I will have her read a writing assignment or part of the Rod and Staff lesson to me, or look for some other reason to have her read aloud. I also still read to her quite a bit, in science, literature, and history. I find that that advances her vocabulary a lot.

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periodically the entire time I homeschooled all the way through 8th grade. I found that although dss could read well above reading level he had some odd pronunciations of words because he wasn't a great decoder.


Occasionally he would ask me what a word was (what's an azzlum?) and after I figured out what he meant (asylum) I decided that reading about 2 pages per week while I was sitting with him would be enough to make sure we caught those words that weren't typically covered in a vocabulary program.


Usually, I would read a page and he would read a paragraph or two until I got tired of reading and then we were done. I would do this several times per week. But since I don't much care for reading out loud, I wasn't going to make him do it for too long. It just exhausts me to read out loud.

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Yes, this is a dailt thing for both my 6 and 8 year olds. My 6 year old is reading Pathway Readers (the first 3-book set this year) and my 8 year old is halfway finished with Christian Libery Press's Nature Reader Level 3. He didn't want to read Pahway readers because he said they were too babyish and redundant. Funny, my youngest begs to read another chapter -- he really likes the stories, while my 8 yo loves the science he learns.


Five minutes each is all we spend a day on their oral reading.

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I'm reluctant to share how much my own dd7 reads aloud because I think each family needs to take cues from their individual children instead of comparing to others. With my own dd7, I've worked hard to instill in her the desire to do a good job no matter what she's doing. I read engaging books aloud to her with enthusiasm, which in turns makes her want to read. She sees me silently reading on my own and questions me when I laugh out aloud while reading. "What is so funny Mommy?" "The book I'm reading, a character said something funny and it made me laugh."


I've also told her that practice is the only way to get better at something. It's okay to stumble, mispronounce, and want to skip- but there's a point where you just try harder because in the end you know it will be worth it. I've shown her that books can lead to other worlds and she desires that too. A few months ago she was frustrated with reading, she didn't want to read anything aloud or if she did it was with attitude or she would purposely skip the hard parts. I asked her why she didn't enjoy reading and she told me that it was because she stumbles over the words. We have revisited phonics with success, in about 10 weeks focusing just on phonics she has improved greatly with fluency and she's enjoying reading.


I don't have any advice for you in particular other than to talk to your son. Find out why he doesn't like reading, look to see if you've shown him that reading can open up a whole new world to him...is it the books you're asking him to read? Have you tried shared reading with him? (Have him read 1/2 a chapter, then you finish the 2nd half? Is it because he is having reading troubles? He might need an eye exam...


Dd7 reads aloud daily:

- Bible story from our Bible curriculum

- 20 minutes of literature, science or historical fiction, sometimes non-fiction in narrative (right now George's Marvelous Medicine by Roald Dahl)

- shared reading with what I'm reading aloud, right now Mother West Wind's Children by Thornton Burgess

- poetry


Hope this helps,

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Jessica's post reminded me of what happened tonight. We were finishing up science on my bed after dinner by reading some books on insects. I read one of the books, and then my youngest (Ben) asked if he could read aloud one to Nathan and me. I said sure. He ended up reading two (they were very easy books which I chose purposely for him -- he is not quite as passionate about learning as Nathan). Then, Nathan wanted to read one aloud.


I have found that they just love reading aloud when they get to snuggle with me. Nathan does read bits here and there from Usborne science encyclopedias, the Great Animal Search sort of books, and Jonathan Park guides to the audio books and such, whereas Ben was reading very short science picture books on the floor last night. I would not call them avid readers at all on their own.


But, make it couch or bed time reading, and they love it.

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