Never underestimate the value of reading, singing, and drawing songs to improve reading skills. Songs have a natural rhythm which helps to improve fluency. Fluent readers are free to concentrate on meaning, so appropriate pauses and inflection must be developed. It is well-documented that repetition of text improves many reading skills. If you are a public school teacher, there are many non-religious holiday songs; “Jingle Bell Rock” is a favorite. Patriotic songs are also great for Veterans Day and Memorial Day. Today’s kids do not sing enough of these songs which encourage patriotism.
Parents and teachers can google one of the several internet sites which provide free lyrics for songs. Copy those which you like and which are appropriate for the reading level of your students. Next, have students read the songs aloud individually, or in a group, WITH the teacher. Then all can sing the songs together. Don’t worry if you are leading them, and you cannot carry a tune. It doesn’t matter! After this, a karaoke session, with or without a karaoke machine, provides loads of fun for students who wish to try singing by themselves or with a partner.
Finally, assign drawing an appropriate picture to illustrate the song(s) on individual paper or on a wall mural. This will improve visualization and comprehension skills. See our Blog Post: Visualization. Students enjoy music and drawing while learning important reading skills, especially fluency.
© Reading Spotlight 2016