Read Outloud

Read Outloud


Dialogic Reading Enhances Language Skills In Preschoolers

“turn ‘Cat in the Hat’ into reading readiness with this easy method”
Reading readiness is a big concern for most parents of preschoolers, but kids with hearing impairments and other audiological difficulties can really struggle to meet language milestones. Dialogic reading is an easy, fun way to help all preschoolers develop language skills quickly. Just a few weeks of applying these methods can result in months worth of developmental advancement.

Reading aloud is a great way to bond and develop good habits, but tends to be a very passive exercise for your child. Dialogic reading is a specific way of engaging your child in the story as you tell it, bringing their involvement far beyond turning pages and looking at pictures. You start a conversation that encourages them to interact. The two methods are PEER and CROWD.

PEER stands for Prompt, Evaluate, Expand, and Repeat. You prompt your child with a question about the story, evaluate their response, expand by adding context or other information, and repeat to ensure understanding. You can do this on every page of the book after the first few readings: “what is that?” (prompt), “fish!”, “yes (evaluate), that’s a blue fish(expand).” “can you say blue fish?” (repeat).

Prompts are easy to find using the CROWD acronym. Completion prompts give the child a familiar but incomplete phrase or rhyme and let them fill in the blank. Use the same style of the book: “three star, four star, orange star, green….”. Recall prompts ask your child about the story or characters: “what does the old lady whisper?” or “what color did he turn his spots first?”.

Open-ended prompts work better with more complex stories or pictures: “what are they doing here?”. Who, what, when, where and why are excellent prompts: “who whispers hush?” or “where is the red balloon?” that are easy to identify in simple stories. Distancing prompts encourage your child to connect the story to their own knowledge and experience. “Should we say goodnight to your room? What will you say goodnight to?”

Start slowly and give a lot of encouragement. The methods are good parameters, but the point is to open a discussion about what you’re reading. They enjoy your attention and the interaction without realizing they’re also developing advanced language skills. Any preschooler can benefit enormously from dialogic reading, and children with developmental delays can catch up rapidly in just a few minutes a day. For more information on how to foster language skills or resolve audiological problems, make an appointment in our office.

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Dialogic Reading Enhances Language Skills In Preschoolers
-Catherine Wells, Team Writer

Carolina Pediatric Therapy © December 2013

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