Audiobooks are gaining in popularity amongst library patrons. The Audio Publishers Association reports sales of audiobooks in 2017 were up 23% over the previous year. While we see the popularity of audiobooks among adults in our libraries, there are compelling reasons to promote audiobooks to our younger patrons.
One of the main goals of elementary school teachers and parents is to teach children to read by giving them the tools and skills they need to be successful. Audiobooks support these skills. Providing visual as well as auditory materials creates a multisensory experience beneficial to many students, especially those with learning and developmental disabilities or for those whose primary language is not English. A child’s fluency, inflection, and pronunciation all improve from listening to audiobooks, especially when paired with print materials.
Need some numbers to back up these claims? Look no further. Listening to audiobooks:
• Increases reading accuracy by 52%
• Improves comprehension by 76%
• Increases recall 40% when combined with print materials (vs. print alone)
(For a beautiful infographic with these statistics and more, visit this page on APA’s website.)
If the statistics don’t win you over, then remember that audiobooks are just plain fun. Children’s audiobooks are frequently enhanced with music or sound effects, and narrators will often use distinct voices, making the listen even more enjoyable. If you have never listened to the Harry Potter series read by Jim Dale, you are most definitely missing out. (as posted on https://www.ebscohost.com/novelist-the-latest/blog-article/audiobooks-build-reading-skills )
Melissa loves reading mysteries and historical fiction. She watches way too much hockey. And would like to have more time for crafting cool stuff.