Sapphire - posted on 10/29/2010 ( 7 moms have responded )
Many of you know that I am an English teacher, and a part of the reading curriculum is a readin gprogram called Accelerated Reading (AR). In a nutshell, kids have to read library books. Books of their own chosing. Books are leveled by difficulty reading level and have a point value. So every quarter kids need to reach a certain point goal. Some of the in-class required reading has been through audio downloads. But the AR program is designed for personal reading. In my high school, every kid and every teacher has a laptop, these kids are constantly plugged in. Kids can use their headphones for their ipods & cell phones, as well as their laptops. I have a lot of kids who truly hate to read, and therefore they are failing the AR part of the course. So I suggested to download an audio book and listen to it, then take the book test. And then I made a blanket statement to my classes that "Since you guys are always plugged in to your headphones, *IF* your parents allow you to download audio books, *I* use the web site audible.com which is safe and inexpensive. You are *NOT* required to use this website, but it's an option if your parents want to pay for an audio version of the book" Otherwise, read the book!" So I did receive an email from an unhappy parent who was "appalled" that as an English teacher I would reccommend an audio download instead of promoting books. It's no wonder we have lazy kids! I was FUMING and had to take several hours before replying back. This is such an electronic plugged in generation, that this was simply one additional option to reach their AR requirement in class. IMO, audio books will never replace a hard copy of a book, but it has a lot of value, especially with special needs/dyslexic population. Or, for simply those kids who don't like reading, they do have success with the audio listening book.
So......with my long drawn out story......are audio books helpful or a hinderance?