Hameray Classroom Literacy Blog

Parents' Guide to an Interactive Read Aloud: Family Literacy, Part 6

Due to the popularity of our posts on the role of   parental involvement in children's literacy , which present ideas for Family Literacy Workshop activities taken from   Family Literacy Workshops   for Preschool through Grade 6: A Research Based Approach , we've decided to keep the subject a recurring topic here on our blog, with a new post every week or so offering new free activity downloads and further instruction on   how to hold successful family literacy workshops at your school.   Most Tuesdays you can check back here and find this kind of content. You can see the earlier posts   here . You can download the remaining take-home activities for Workshop #2,   Finger Puppet Theater   and   Media Madhouse , at the bottom of the page!

Today, we give you something to pass along to your students' parents to help them assist their children in learning to read!

Parents Guide to an Interactive Read Aloud

Before the read aloud

  • Choose a book that will be interesting to you and your child
  • Read the book to yourself before you read it with your child

During the read aloud

  • Be enthusiastic – read with expression
  • Stop occasionally and ask your child questions about what you are reading. Use the sample questions in this guide.

After the read aloud

  • Using the sample questions in this guide, check to make sure that your child understood the book.
  • Re-reading the book is beneficial for your child.


General Questions for Your Child

Younger Children

  • Do you see any letters you know?
  • Do you see any letters that are in your name?
  • Do you know what sound this letter makes?
  • Which way do we read – point to where we start? Where do we go next?
  • What does the illustrator do?
  • Who is the author? What does the author do?
  • Can you point to a capital letter?
  • Can you point to a comma? Can you point to a period?

Older Children

  • Do you see any words that you do not know, or that might be tricky for you?
  • Do the pictures, tables, information boxes or other graphics in the book help you understand the story? How do they help you?
  • What does the table of contents tell us?
  • Why do you think that word was bolded, bigger, or different from the other words?
  • Is this a fiction or nonfiction book? Could it a fable, myth, or book of poetry – is it something different?

Questions to Check for Understanding

Questions to Ask Before the Read Aloud

  • Based on the title, what do you think this story is going to be about?
  • Based on the picture on the cover, what do you think the story is going to be about?

Questions to Ask During the Read Aloud

  • What do you think is going to happen next?
  • Why do you think that character just did what he or she did?
  • Have you ever felt what this character is feeling?
  • What is this? (point to something in the picture)
  • Can you tell me in your own words what we just read?

Questions to Ask After the Read Aloud

  • Tell me this story in your own words?
  • What did you learn from this book?
  • Who was your favorite character? Why?
  • What was your favorite part? Why?
  • Do you have any questions about this story? What are they?
  • If you were the author, would you have ended the story the same way? Why or why not?
  • Does this story remind you of something we have done? What?
  • Did this story remind you of something that has happened to you or someone you know? What?


Below are this week's take-home activities to download . Remember to check back next Tuesday for another post on Family Literacy!

- Tara Rodriquez