Reading to Children

Reading to Children:

This week, my students in Grade 9 Applied English chose children’s stories and read them to some young children at the school Daycare program.

To be honest, they were somewhat apprehensive at first, and entered the room which was bustling with the activity of busy, energetic young children.

I got the sense that they didn’t quite know where to move, where to sit, what to do. This wasn’t a classroom or an environment with which they are familiar, so it took a bit of prompting, some encouragement and eventually the natural aspects of storytelling just took over.

And then something remarkable happened…
I’ve tried several times this year to create some experiential learning without much success. Cost is always a factor and with cut backs being experienced everywhere, it’s difficult to find rewarding experiences for my students. However, this experience was unanticipated and the payoff was something unexpected.

Reading to younger children gave my students in Applied English a boost to their confidence. I don’t even think they realized the changes they experienced, but I could see it visibly in the way they walked back to the classroom, in the way they then approached their own reading. More importantly, it showed up in my data; I had them write two short reading comprehension quizzes right after reading to children, and the results were nothing short of remarkable.