Reading Aloud, Reading Together.

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I mentioned in previous posts that I was soon to become a reading volunteer for The Reader Organisation’s Get Into Reading program. I have been with a group for the past seven weeks now and it has so far been one of the most rewarding things I have ever done. My expectations have been succeeded. I read to a group of approximately five people every Thursday morning in a local residential care home. That one hour of my day is by far the most enjoyable. I take along a selection of poems boasting plenty of discussion, sometimes they like a poem, sometimes they don’t…and that’s ok. As long as the session of reading aloud and reading together stimulates them, I am happy. The Reader Organisation has carried out lengthy research to show just how beneficial this process is and I am glad to now be a part of it. 

Reading aloud is harder than most people think. It takes confidence and courage, not just for me, but for the group members. The best bit is when they begin to read the poem aloud off their own bat, no prompt, just sheer enjoyment of poetry. That is what we do, we read aloud and we read together. Get Into Reading is such a fantastic program so if you find yourself with a fair amount of free time and think you’d be a good volunteer, keep an eye on the website (click the image above). In fact, look at their website anyway, it’s brill, and they do a brill job. 

N.

Allowed to be Aloud

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Reading, as we all know, is usually a silent and personal activity, and the only time we read aloud is say for a presentation or reading to children, or to a group. So why don’t we ever read aloud to ourselves whilst curled up alone with a book? I mean, say you’re on the train or bus and start belting out chapter 2 of your current selection then granted, people may look at you strangely. wouldn’t, but others unfortunately would. I have tried it a few times when I’ve been reading alone and I find it really does help me connect with the words and the story. Not only does it help me but I feel like I owe it to the author; this is their passion here in front of me and in some cases, their life’s work so the more attention I give to it, the more alive it becomes. 

As well as reading the work of other writers, reading aloud my own writing is helpful as I can hear the places where improvement is needed e.g. tone, emphasis, structure etc. If I stumble over something I have written, then my reader is more than likely to do so also. 

I am soon to become a reading volunteer for a reading organisation that includes reading aloud to groups of people of an older age. I am looking forward to this and will be sure to post all the details as this develops. 

So, for now, allow yourself to read aloud.

N.