Talking About Books With Your Students

It’s WONDERFUL that you read to your students, or read along with them. But did you know that talking with your students before, during, and after you read together is also an important part of their learning?

As you and your students discuss what you read,

  • You help students further develop their oral communication skills while naturally bridging oral language to written language.
  • You encourage them to make connections between the text and something in their own lives. Making connections like these is an essential part of learning — it helps students see written text come to life.
  • You provide an environment which makes reading a natural part of your pleasant social interaction. Don’t underestimate the power of your positive relationship to encourage and enhance your students’ learning. Research suggests that we learn best when we like the person who is teaching us.
  • You greatly facilitate their comprehension of the book in a natural, enjoyable way.

What do we mean by "talking about the written text?" We find that asking open-ended questions usually generates lively discussion.  Give it a try, and see!

Remember that we are referring to talking with your students–not just talking at them. We want students to be active, not passive participants in their learning.