Benefits of Audio Books for Children with Special Needs

Do you have any road trips planned for the rest of the summer? Have you fallen behind in reading aloud to your child? Try audio books! Audio books won’t replace reading aloud to your child but it can be wonderful way to experience literacy in a different way and together. I have been a member of Audible for many years now and have found personal benefits from listening to audio books. Audio books can also be downloaded for free through your local library. As a visual learner, I have found listening to books challenging at times. If I get distracted, I would often miss part of the books. However, the more I listened to books, the more I seemed to enjoy the experience. 

Does your child enjoy listening to audio books? I found this wonderful article written by Reading Rockets that discusses the benefits of audio books for children here.  In this article, the author reviews many language and learning concepts that can benefit children such as improving critical thinking skills, auditory comprehension skills, introducing different types of genres and increasing vocabulary. From my perspective, I find that listening to audio books provides an excellent model of reading aloud because the reader is often using their voice in a variable tone and volume. Also, as I have discussed before in my article Reading with Expression, this is crucial in a child’s ability to engage in the text being read aloud. To learn more the importance of reading with expression and other reading aloud tips, check out my ebook here. Listening to audio books can beneficial for all readers, but especially important for those children with language and learning disabilities. Follow these tips below!

Here are some language and learning tips when listening to audio books with your child:

  1. Choose a book together that you both can enjoy. Since this will be a topic of discussion, it’s important for everyone listening to the book to be interested in the plot.
  2. Pause the book as needed. Often times, I will pause the book to review what has occurred and check in to ask questions. This is important because if something is not understood, it’s best to discuss as the book is being read instead of at the end. 
  3. Choose books that are moderate in length. When beginning to listen to audio books with children that have attention and language delays, choosing a books that is moderate in length can be key. Since you want audio books to be successful, shorter books can be easier to begin with. 
  4. If you aren’t in the car often, put an audio book on when making dinner or sitting on the couch together. I do find the best way to listen to audio books is in the car but I spend a lot of time in my car! 
  5. Expose your child to the book in different forms after finishing the book. Personally, I think this makes the experience of listening the book even more enjoyable. This can be enjoyed as a movie or even a play! You can also have your child write a short synopsis of the book or explain the book’s plot to someone who hasn’t listened to the book (but don’t give away the ending!). You can also read the book aloud after as well to give your child another type of literacy experience.

Looking for Recommendations for audio books?

I found this resource on Travel Savvy Mom here. 





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