Critical thinking through stories
As part of our teaching in the two local primary teacher's colleges we recently taught sessions on the benefits of reading storybooks aloud to children and how to conduct a 'read aloud session' in a class setting. Part of the lesson included giving student teachers the opportunity to read aloud to each other. This was an eye-opening experience. Our student teachers need a lot of practise with fluency and a lot of opportunities to talk read and listen to storybooks, even children's storybooks, and to answer questions about the text. We want to prepare them to be great primary teachers and to give children the best possible academic start they can, and we believe teaching children to read well and encouraging a passion for reading is an important step to achieving this.
Next year we plan to pilot a read aloud project with both primary teacher's colleges where we will be teaching Direct Reading Thinking Activities through children's storybooks with student teachers. Basically, we want to teach student teachers how to teach critical thinking through storybooks, and along the way improve their own reading and teaching skills. We are preparing ourselves this term by training our literacy mentors in various Direct Reading Thinking Activities and creating a brief manual for this work.
What was your favourite book to be read to as a child?