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Using Audiobooks to Teach Novels

How to use TPRS Books Audiobooks?

This is an excerpt from the primer pages in our Simpli-Guides. For more ideas for teaching with novels, check out our Simpli-Guides here!

Did you know that listening is the first language skill we develop? 

As a result, listening is an integral part of our development when acquiring any language, whether that be our first, second, third or twentieth language. Audiobooks are a way to deliver the information from a book to students by using the important skill of listening.

While you could simply push play and allow the class to listen to the audiobook (and no one here is telling you that is the wrong way to do it!), here are some other activities you might consider trying to get more mileage out of the audiobooks.

Pre-Reading Strategies

  • listen and draw
  • listen and circle
  • listen and pause / answer questions as a class
  • listen and put events in order
  • listen and answer comprehension questions
  • listen and take simple quiz
  • listen and summarize in writing or in pairs
  • listen and read

During-Reading Strategies

  • listen while reading
  • while a character speaks, have the students stand or while a target phrase or concept occurs, have them use predetermined gesture
  • read and play audiobook, then pause audiobook and ask questions, once satisfied they are following and understanding, continue

After-Reading Strategies

  • Dramatize with audiobook - make it as if it is a staged production, play the audiobook, have actors lip sync to it, dramatize, give stage directions in Spanish, YOU are the director... after various “scenes” in each chapter, ask follow-up questions
  • If you are savvy with editing, download a free program like Audacity and divide up parts of the chapter. Then play those parts of the chapter and have students match those sections to a picture or to put them in an appropriate order.
  • Listen to review

But we’re only scratching the surface! 

What other ideas do you have or how have you have found success with audiobooks in the classroom?

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