Reading Aloud to Children Just Learning English
Make certain all children feel included in group read alouds by:
- making the book personal by pointing out how the characters in the stories are like them or by substituting their names for those of characters.
- reading books that reflect the culture and home language of the children.
- choosing books with patterns (rhymes, repetitive phrases, a circular story that begins and ends in the same place, so children can "fill in the blank" when you pause before reading the end of the rhyme or repeated phrase.
In addition, make time to:
- build security for language learning by snuggling up several times a day for a private read aloud with one or two children who speak the same home language.
- find books in children's home language, perhaps from the local library, the Internet, publishers, families, community resources, or older children.
- ask children to choose books they want you to read.
- guess what comes next.
- use the pictures to tell what is happening.
- talk about things that are important to them.
- teach you the names of things in their home language.