"This book will prove a valuable resource for parents, teachers, and librarians on the vital topic of reading aloud." Library Journal, Starred Review
Parents and teachers know that reading aloud to children is important, and many parents of infants and toddlers read aloud to them daily. However, when children start to read on their own, parents often stop reading aloud. But these early elementary school years are actually a perfect time to build vocabulary and comprehension skills through reading aloud and Active Reading.
Raising an Active Reader makes clear the process of learning to read, how Active Reading fits into raising strong readers, and what adults can do to encourage strong language, comprehension, and vocabulary in children in grades K-3. This book extends on the ABCs of Active Reading (Ask Questions, Build Vocabulary, and make Connections) as they apply to older children for picture books, chapter books, and novels. It provides parents and teachers with examples, clear explanations, and ideas for making one-on-one or small group read aloud sessions a powerful way to build children’s early literacy and language skills, all while creating a lifelong love of reading.
Samantha Cleaver, PhD, studied read aloud and developed Active Reading during her work with Read Charlotte, a community-wide initiative to double the number of students reading on grade level by 3rd grade in Mecklenburg County, NC. She holds a doctorate in special education with a focus on literacy interventions from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.
Table of Contents
Active Reading: Preparing Your Child for Reading Success
What is Active Reading?
The Case for Read Aloud when Kids can Read on Their Own
Ready to Read with Me More
Chapter 1: Keep Reading with Me
Active Reading in the Early Elementary Years
Elementary School-Aged Children Learn (A Lot) from Picture Books
Active Reading: Evidence-Based Bedtime Reading
Raising Active Readers
ABCs of Active Reading with Elementary Schoolers
A: Ask Questions
B: Build Vocabulary
C: Make Connections
Keep Reading with Me
What to Remember
Chapter 2: I Can Read on my Own!
What is Reading?
Reading and your Elementary-Schooler
The Big 5: What it Takes to Read
Language: The Foundation for Reading
Active Reading and the Home-School Connection
How do Parents Contribute to Reading Success?
More Ways to Help Your Child with Reading at Home
Chapter 3: Books, Books, Books: Building a Library for a Growing Reader
Active Reading Wide and Deep
Your Child’s Reading “Diet”
Illustrated Chapter Books
Myths, Fairy Tales, and Folk Tales
Your Child’s Perfect Fit
Books that are Beyond Their Years
The Latest, Greatest Books
Windows and Mirrors: Cultivating Diversity and Empathy through Books
Books as Windows
Books as Mirrors
Books They Read On Their Own
My First Chapter Books
Tree Books vs. E-Books
Chapter 4: Ask Questions
The Importance of Conversation
Why do we Ask Questions?
Asking Questions about Stories
Using Questions to Help Children Understand Difficult Texts
1. What Does the Text Say?
2. How Does the Text Work?
3. What Does the Text Mean?
4. What Does the Text Inspire You to Do?
Thinking Critically about Stories
How do Children Develop Critical Thinking?
How to Raise a Critical Thinker
Get Kids to Ask Questions
Tell Me More
Chapter 5: Build Vocabulary
Vocabulary is Important, Imperative, and Significant
How Children Learn Words
Finding Words: The Power of Books
Choosing Words during Active Reading
Building Your Child’s Vocabulary through Active Reading
Becoming Word Learners: Developing Word Consciousness
Words, Words, Words
Chapter 6: Make Connections to the Child’s World: Fiction
Making Inferences: Connecting Old and New Information
How Do You Know? Helping Children Make Inferences
Remember to Circle Back
What if My Child’s Prediction Makes No Sense?
Connecting with Stories to Learn about the World
Using Fiction to Help Children Connect to Tough Topics
Connect to Your Child’s World
Chapter 7:Making Connections to Nonfiction Text
Nonfiction and 3rd Grade Reading
The Challenge of Reading Nonfiction
Background Knowledge: The Backbone for Understanding Nonfiction
Build Background Knowledge: Read Wide and Deep
How to Encourage Wide and Deep Reading
Talk about Nonfiction Book Structure
Applying the ABCs of Active Reading to Nonfiction
Getting Started: Book Walks
Ask Questions about Nonfiction
Building Vocabulary with Nonfiction
Make Connections to Nonfiction
Connect with Nonfiction Text
Chapter 8: Active Reading with Chapter Books and Novels
What Makes Chapter Books and Novels Special?
Choosing Chapter Books and Novels to Read Together
Choosing Chapter Books for Your Child to Read On Their Own
The ABCs of Active Reading Chapter Books and Novels
Story Grammar Questions
Visualizing What We Read
Make Connections with Background Knowledge
Make Connections From Scene to Scene
Make Connections with Characters, Events, and Feelings
Raising a Novel Reader
Active Reading with Longer Stories
Chapter 9: Active Reading and the Struggling Reader
How Kids Struggle with Reading
What Kids Who Struggle with Reading Need in Grades K-2
When Children Struggle to Make Inferences
Model How to Visualize
Reread Important Sections
Work at the Sentence Level
Build a Bridge
Use Wordless Picture Books
Active Reading with Struggling Readers
More Ways to Support a Child Who Struggles with Reading
Chapter 10: Raising an Active Reader
Active Readers beyond 3rd Grade
Keep Your Child Reading
Taking the ABCs of Active Reading beyond Books
Develop Your Child’s Interests and Passions
Keeping Read Aloud Alive in Your Family
Appendix A: Book Lists
Appendix B: Frequently Asked Questions
About the Author
Cleaver asserts that many parents stop reading aloud to their kids when the children start reading on their own. However, the elementary years prove one of the most beneficial times for reading aloud since vocabulary and comprehension skills are developed through Active Reading and reading aloud. The ABCs of active reading (ask questions, build vocabulary, and make connections) are here applied to these crucial years in skill development. To engage learners there are lists of questions for before, during, and after reading. In addition, the author shares how to practice active reading skills in various genres: nonfiction, fiction, first chapter books, and picture books. A special section explores how to help struggling readers by using such techniques as modeling how to visualize, using wordless picture books, keeping realistic goals, and celebrating strengths. The appendixes contain book lists organized by category and answers to frequently asked questions. This book will prove a valuable resource for parents, teachers, and librarians on the vital topic of reading aloud. With many titles geared toward reading aloud to babies, toddlers, and preschoolers, this helpful work will be ideal for school libraries.
About the Author