Audio Books, Comprehension, Fluency, and the Common Core

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Using Audio Books to Increase Comprehension and Fluency

The CCSS require students in all grades to read “grade-level text with accuracy, appropriate rate, and expression on successive readings.”  They also ask students to re-read as necessary for increased comprehension and fluency on successive readings.

Books with an audio component that allow students to read along with the text are an integral part of learning fluency and comprehension for all types of learners, especially those with language-based processing disorders or English Language learners.

Audio books allow students to read along as they listen to the text being read aloud.  There are several ways to use audio books for whole class and individual reading activities, and there are innumerable benefits to the student.

Why Are Audio Books So Effective?

  • Students hear the text read with fluency as they read along
  • They identify the proper speed of the reader, the tone and inflection, pausing at punctuation, and pronunciation
  • Listening while reading the words helps improve sight word recognition
  • Students can increase comprehension when they are not spending their energy on decoding the text
  • Students can listen at their own pace and repeat sections as needed

How To Use Audio Books:

  • Choose a text or allow students to choose a text that is an appropriate challenge level and of interest to the student.
  • Have students read along with the text while listening.
  • Students can listen a second time, reading out loud along while listening.
  • Once students feel comfortable, they can then read the text independently without the audio.
  • They can then continue reading out loud or silently for further practice of fluency skills.

 

Additional Comprehension Strategies

  •  Give the students questions to consider before reading the text.
  • Ask students to make predictions based on the title or illustrations on the cover.
  • Provide questions after reading that require higher level thinking, ask students to make connections, respond to an event in the text, or give an opinion rather than listing facts from the story.

 Big Universe Learning

  • Big Universe Learning has an online library with an extensive collection of read-along books with an audio component.  876
  • Students can read along on the screen at a pace that is appropriate for their reading level, stop at any point during the reading, go back and revisit previous pages, and move ahead with just a click of the mouse.
  • Books can be added to a student’s individual library or a classroom library, so that the student can easily find their books and teachers can promote independent learning skills.
  • Teachers can also choose an online assessment that aligns to a chosen Common Core Standard directly on the Big Universe website.
  • Simply chose the type of text, grade level, and standards concept for a list of books that include an online assessment.

 

Some of the Common Core Standards for Fluency addressed in this article include:

  1. 1. CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.4 Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension.
    1. CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.4a Read grade-level text with purpose and understanding.
    2. CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.4b Read grade-level text orally with accuracy, appropriate rate, and expression on successive readings.
    3. 2. CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.1.4c Use context to confirm or self-correct word recognition and understanding, rereading as necessary. CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.2.4 Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension.
    4. CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.2.4a Read grade-level text with purpose and understanding.
    5. CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.2.4b Read grade-level text orally with accuracy, appropriate rate, and expression on successive readings.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.2.4c Use context to confirm or self-correct word recognition and understanding, rereading as necessary.

    1. 3. CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.3.4 Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension.
    2. CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.3.4a Read grade-level text with purpose and understanding.
    3. CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.3.4b Read grade-level prose and poetry orally with accuracy, appropriate rate, and expression on successive readings.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RF.3.4c Use context to confirm or self-correct word recognition and understanding, rereading as necessary.

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