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Audio Books and Home Schooling

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For years, homeschooling parents have incorporated audiobooks as part of their daily school routines. Audiobooks help readers of all ages to more easily appreciate stories and understand complex language and vocabulary. Professionally narrated audiobooks incorporate different voices for characters and the stories themselves are brought to life with the addition of sound effects and background music. Listeners learn to understand and become more familiar with foreign accents. The fluency with which the stories are read helps young readers understand the cadence of language, and indirectly provides an example for how to capture and hold listeners’ attention. Thanks to mobile technology, it’s now easier than ever to get and listen to a great story. 

Who might benefit from audiobooks?

Both parents and children can benefit from and enjoy well-produced audiobooks. Multicultural stories are often recorded by native speakers of the language, making pronunciation more precise and accurate. Audiobooks can also provide support for children who are not quite ready to read independently and struggling readers. Often, children understand and appreciate listening to stories at a higher level than their reading ability allows.

What to do while listening to audiobooks?

The beauty of having someone else read is that the listeners can each be engaged in their own independent activities. Families can make chore time more exciting by putting on a story. As part of the school routine, children can complete graphic organizers or draw illustrations of the story being played. Audiobooks are great way to bring the family together by sharing in the act of listening, even while each member of the family engages in their own tasks. Consider swapping family movie night for a family story night. Work on independent hobbies or complete a puzzle together while enjoying a beautifully recorded story. Pause the story just before the end and discuss predictions for the conclusion.

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Where can you listen to audiobooks?

Many families, regardless of whether they homeschool, enjoy listening to audiobooks in the car. They’re perfect for quick trips in the car, running errands, or going to and from practices. No need to worry about losing your place, readers getting motion sickness, or inadequate light for reading. Even traffic becomes more bearable when you’re listening to a good story!

A less commonly thought place to listen is the bathtub! For children and adults, baths can be quiet and relaxing. Conveniently, audiobook recordings eliminate the worry of getting book pages wet, and provide another opportunity for children to listen to fluent reading.

When can you listen to audiobooks?

Audiobooks can be incorporated as independent listening time and as a group activity. Children of different ages and ability levels can listen independently, while the parent works with siblings. Listening as a group, children can complete related tasks appropriate to their own age and grade level. Younger children can illustrate the story, while older children complete plot timelines or collect information to write their own spin off stories.

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