Written by Francisca Goldsmith on Thursday, April 13, 2017
For teachers and parents hearing about SYNC for the first time, there is the common response of "Oh, this is great for teens who don't read or who don't don't enjoy reading." True enough. However, audiobooks are both fun for and useful to avid print readers as well.
By the time we've reached our teens, those who have good solid print reading skills may well have started skimming instead of taking the time to read deeply enough to gather details and to take in meaningful turns of phrase and word choices. Avid teen readers, too, regularly read print texts with vocabulary they haven't heard pronounced--whether terms in other languages, discipline-specific professional nomenclature, or archaic English. Some avid print readers also find print reading so comfortable that it hasn't occurred to them to try something different.
Audiobook listening addresses all these things. Listening to the natural rhythms of language allows one to really take the time to gather details and delight in well-turned phrases. Authentic voices include accurate pronunciation of scientific and imaginary terms as well as ones in French, Spanish, Japanese, German, Icelandic, or.... And in a season where we are being challenged to try "Reading Without Walls," AudiobookSYNC offers a format that may, in fact, give avid print readers the opportunity challenge themselves to simply try listening to read. The 32 audiobooks given away free to each and every participant all summer, too, include a variety of genres, viewpoints, and reasons to be heard. There is, indeed, a challenge within this collection for every one of us and every teen, too.
Please keep on sharing the encouraging messages you offer your local teens to participate. Your reports are helping others to reach out effectively in their own communities. And think avid as well as reluctant, when it comes to teen readers you hope to connect with SYNC. Fly over a few walls!