Now that your reader is enjoying books independently, it is tempting to forget to enjoy books together. Reading aloud to third graders and even older children has many wonderful benefits. Here are just a few...
Reading aloud builds vocabulary. Reading is a great way to learn new words and their meanings. Reading aloud has the added benefit of an experienced reader demonstrating how those new words are pronounced.
Reading aloud also provides an opportunity for you to model what a good reader sounds like when they are reading. Reading aloud should sound conversational and the tone should match the meaning of the passage.
Reading aloud improves comprehension. It provides an opportunity for your child to dig into the meaning of the story without having to decode the words read. As an added benefit, you can discuss what's going on and ask questions about characterization, setting, etc.
Reading aloud improves listening skills. In order to share the book with you, your child needs to pay attention and focus on the content. While you have your child's attention, you can use books, both fiction and nonfiction, to discuss and share your opinions of difficult issues, such as bullying, racism, religious bias, gender discrimination, or other conflicts that might touch a third grader's world.