Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Crickets, Books, and Bach: Develop a Summer Listening Program

The importance of learning to listen

Listening is an engaging way to learn, a primary approach to developing or strengthening reading strategies, and, in some cases, a necessary means to access information and knowledge.

Listening media, such as audio books and text-to-speech, can be especially helpful to children with learning disabilities, such as those with dyslexia and attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) , who struggle with print-based learning, and central auditory processing disorder (CAPD), who may struggle to listen.

For such students well-chosen listening experiences can open up new vistas of learning, providing access to information and ideas previously 'hidden' in books and supporting the reading process itself.

Such opportunities provide a powerful supplement or alternative to a reading program focused around printed text.

Research has shown that combining reading and listening through the use of audio books or text-to-speech programs improves the literacy skills of struggling readers, including those with learning disabilities.

Reading comprehension, listening comprehension, phonological awareness and blending, and naming skills have shown to be improved with a combined reading-listening program.

Listening while reading helps children learn the patterns of language, the obvious 'code' of letters and words on the page as well as less obvious codes, such as tone, nuance, and implied meaning.

Brain imaging technologies show that when we listen, different parts of the brain are engaged than when we read—or even when we merely hear something.

Listening can provide whole levels of information that are essential to determining the value and validity of a source.

Teaching children to listen to tone of voice not only helps them develop reading skills but can help in the development of their social and conversational skills, too.

For more information, see Plato Revisited: Learning Through Listening in the Digital World by David Rose& Bridget Dalton, published by RFB&D.

Read more here: Crickets, Books, and Bach: Develop a Summer Listening Program | Reading Topics A-Z | Reading Rockets

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