Interactive Read Alouds (IRA) are easily one of my favorite pieces to my literacy block in my first grade classroom!
Before I begin…
From the IRA website, Linda Hoyt quotes, “When read-alouds are understood as powerful tools for teaching literary elements, building analytical ability, and addressing the standards, they can bring both joy and accelerated learning into the lives of our students.”
Interactive read alouds are a way that a teacher can make the most of read aloud time by using creative ways to use children’s literature to teach any grade level a specific standard along with building fluency and comprehension. Strategies include combining engaging guided conversations with reflective thinking for all learners at all skill levels. These lessons include strategic listening, speaking, reading and writing about text being read and allows all students to participate in the activities because the story is being read to them!
After I learned about this type of read aloud, I realized how valuable this time can be! Before I knew how to guide a successful IRA, I was using read alouds more as “time fillers” or just an extra daily activity. Now, I take advantage of each story I read by introducing new vocabulary, engaging students in conversations, and reflecting on specific comprehension strategies for all students involved! I also used to just pick a book up and start reading. The key component of an IRA is being INTENTIONAL. The teacher should read the story ahead of time to mark certain words to point out, places to pose questions and turn and talks along with any other interactive activities for students to engage in. I use sticky notes to note where I will be stopping within the story! This makes the IRA intentional and engaging!
I hope you try an IRA soon if you haven’t already!
Check out this link for more info! http://www.heinemann.com/interactivereadalouds/