When I was a new mom, I had this idea of what our read alouds would look like.
I imagined our family snuggled up together under a cozy blanket with a teetering tower of delicious books at our side. I pictured us reading for hours, my children hanging on my every word. As I read, our home would be blanketed in silence, all would be calm.
And when it came time for our magical read-aloud to end, I would close the book’s covers and my children would gasp in unison, “No, mama! Please! Just one more chapter.”
(And I would smile and agree to one more because I know that reading aloud is the most important part of the homeschool day.)
This, my friends, was a read-aloud fantasy.
In reality, our read alouds are anything but calm and my children are anything but quiet.
More often, I’m reading aloud while one kid interrupts me incessantly, another child doodles, and a third is dressed up like Batman and dancing before a mirror. (Yes, this scenario actually happened.)
If this sounds familiar, keep reading. Today, I am sharing a read-aloud trick to help you rock the most important part of your entire homeschool day!
Rock Your Read Alouds with This Simple Trick
Did you know that your daily read-aloud is the most important part of your *entire* homeschool day?
It’s true! Reading aloud is the single most important thing you can do for your child’s future academic success. (And we have decades of research to prove it!)
Reading aloud also offers a host of non-academic benefits. Plus, reading aloud makes lifelong family memories!
Learn how to start your homeschool day with the most important thing.
Craft a read-aloud routine that works for your unique family and fuel learning throughout the day.
Learn more here:
Children are active learners and this can make your daily read-aloud challenging at times!
My kids burn calories as I read to them.
They wiggle and squirm, bounce and twirl. They interrupt me constantly, peppering me with questions and random, unrelated musings. I read, pause, backtrack, stop, resume.
And, while it is not anything like the fantasy I held long ago, our read-aloud time is special.
I think it is important to remember that children are, by nature, active learners. It is normal for your child to move while you read.
I mean, I don’t know how they do it, but my kids wander around my house while reading!
It’s also normal for you to question whether your kids are actually listening. It often feels as if you are reading to yourself! But I have some tips that will help, so keep reading, book lover!
When it comes to your daily read-aloud, don’t forget the power of a captive audience!
One of my biggest tips for a successful read-aloud is to start with a captive audience.
Will a captive audience make your read-aloud perfect and magical? No, it won’t. But it can definitely help alleviate many common read-aloud challenges.
And please remember that your daily read-aloud is the most important part of your homeschool day. It’s important even when your read-aloud is imperfect, riddled with interruptions, and speckled with sibling squabbles. It is still the most important thing.
5 ways to embrace the power of a captive audience during your daily read-aloud:
Read-aloud trick #1: Embrace the power of a captive audience by reading aloud during meals.
One way to sneak in some read-aloud time without constant interruptions and bickering is to read-aloud during meals. This might work if you wake up and eat breakfast before your children, as I do.
This is how I started our most treasured homeschool tradition: Coffee and Books!
Years ago, we found ourselves in a read-aloud rut. Our bedtime read alouds were anything but peaceful.
I decided to switch things up a bit and read aloud to my children first thing in the morning when everyone was fresh and happy. I called it Coffee and Books. I’d grab a small stack of picture books and read to my children while they ate breakfast.
Little did I know that this simple routine would become a treasured homeschool tradition!
We are now almost finished with our seventh year of homeschooling. Coffee and Books is the best part of our homeschool day. We enjoy this routine every weekday morning. Coffee and Books is something we all look forward to!
Also, this simple read-aloud routine provides me with a sense of success in the morning before we’ve started any of our more traditional homeschooling. I can tackle any topic or academic subject during our morning read-aloud, and I am accomplishing the most important part of the homeschool day, too!
But maybe you eat breakfast at the same time as your children and teens. This is okay! You can still use this trick by listening to an audiobook together during a meal.
Read-aloud trick #2: Embrace the power of a captive audience by reading aloud to your children as they take a tub.
This one only works for littles, but if you have big kids keep reading because I have a tip for you, too!
I know I’m not the only one who loves a bubble bath and a good book. When my children were teeny-tiny, I would plop them in the tub during the witching hour and read-aloud as they played with tub toys.
I have so many fond memories of reading aloud to my children as they splished and splashed. So, if you have teeny-tinies, you might try this read-aloud trick and see if it works for your family.
But, if you have tweens and teens, I have a gold-level read-aloud tip for you!
Read-aloud trick #3: Embrace the power of a captive audience by listening to audiobooks in the car!
This is my go-to trick for sneaking in some read-aloud togetherness with all kiddos, but especially tweens and teens.
Talk about a captive audience! They can’t escape! Ha!
I thought our family read-aloud a lot before I embraced this read-aloud strategy. Once I added an audiobook for errands and car trips, oh my word did we read a lot of books as a family!
And yes, audiobooks count!
Not only do they count, but an engaging audiobook can be car trip gold.
Why? Because it cuts down on sibling squabbles and makes errands with kids in tow far more bearable!
Read-aloud trick #4: Embrace the power of a captive audience by reading aloud to your children while they play.
This is another favorite trick for reading-aloud. This is a perfect opportunity to read aloud. While their little hands are busy, they can listen to your words.
Need some ideas? Try strewing!
Set up an activity for your children. Leave coloring books on the table, drag out the train tracks, set up a domino run.
Read-aloud trick #5: Embrace the power of a captive audience by turning out the lights!
If all else fails, grab a flashlight and a good book and turn off the lights. It’s hard to be distracted when the lights are out!
Plus, there is something absolutely magical about reading in complete darkness. When the rest of the world is black, children are drawn to your words in a new way.
Better yet? You’re making family memories together!
Extend the fun by letting your children stay up after bedtime, reading with this booklight. It’s a favorite in our home and it has encouraged so much reading!
Well, kids think they are pulling one over on you because they are staying up late. In reality, you’re winning because they are reading. Win-win, my book-loving’ friends!
Your daily read-aloud is the single most important part of your homeschool day. Learn how to create a read-aloud routine that works for your unique family!
Reading aloud is the most important part of your entire homeschool day and I’d love to show you how to knock your daily read-aloud straight out of the park. I have poured my book-loving heart and soul into a digital course called How to Rock THE MOST IMPORTANT PART of Your Homeschool Day.
In this course, you will learn how to create a simple, sustainable read-aloud routine that will work for YOUR unique family.
How to Rock THE MOST IMPORTANT PART of Your Homeschool Day features actionable, downloadable tools and resources to help you take your daily read-alouds to the next level.
Learn why reading aloud is the most important part of your entire homeschool day, how to raise readers, the types of readers, how to cultivate a love of reading in your home, how to maximize your library trips, how to document reading, common stumbling blocks, and so much more.
If 2020 taught us anything, it’s to expect the unexpected. Creating a simple, sustainable read-aloud routine can help you to accomplish the most important thing on even the trickiest of days in the most challenging homeschool seasons.
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What you’ll get:
- Over 20 video lessons
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Join us today and rock your read-alouds tomorrow!