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My passion is to instill an awareness and knowledge in parents, extended family, teachers, home school community and anyone participating in the children’s journey of becoming lifelong readers.

From my email blog on “Helping Children Become Lifelong Readers, I wrote, “Many times parents cease to read to their children after the children learn to read. It is extremely important to still take time for these type of reading aloud sessions. Children’s listening vocabulary is much higher than their reading vocabulary. When you continue reading aloud to them you continue their growth at a higher level in literacy and background knowledge. No matter how old we are, or how well we read, we still enjoy the sharing that comes from hearing a good story. To continue reading aloud models reading with expression, excitement, sadness, fear, and fun. “

Jim Trelease in one of his 7 editions of the Jim Trelease, Read Aloud Handbooks wrote about reading aloud to older children. Sometimes it is harder to get them to sit and listen to a read aloud. His thoughts were to grab them when you are reading, say “Listen to this,” and then go on to read some important passage or thought.

I would add to this that as you are silently reading, mark the passage you think you might want to share with an older child. When you capture their attention, flip over to the marked part and read aloud to them. If you can keep their attention discuss it.

I listened to a podcast by Sarah McKensie. During the podcast she and her guest gave some tips for reading aloud during the summer. They suggests having read aloud books placed strategically throughout your house. For instance, the kitchen might be a good place. Any book could be read aloud by the dad, mother, or older sibling during breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Another good place could a shady rest area by the pool, sprinkler or in the backyard. Think about it, there are areas in everyone’s home, where children plop down to rest, have books there, ready to be read.

In my day when you could float down a canal, my friends and I went swimming. We would float down, get out, walk back up and float down again. Then when we got tired we went over to a blanket that we already had strategically placed in the shade and read silently. We would eventually share portions of the story with each other.

When I was at the Idaho Historical Museum, I saw a clip on the Big Burn which lead me to find some books on Teddy Roosevelt work on conservation. Here are three books I would recommend for Family Read Aloud Sessions related to this subject:

The Big Burn: Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire that Saved America

by Timothy Egan

In August of 1910 the forests of Idaho and Washington and Montana were in the middle of a drought. There were small fires burning on the forest floors throughout the whole area. On that fateful date, a high wind blew through the forests kicking the small fires into a burning infernal. The flames roared through the tops of trees and up ridges destroying towns and timber in a blink of an eye.

The Forest Service was a new organization at that time and did not have the experience, knowledge or money to fight this burning infernal that was moving through the Forests of these 3 states. The Forest Service brought in 10,000 men from all areas of life but they couldn’t contain the flames. It was a losing battle.

As the title suggests Teddy Roosevelt and chief forester Gifford Pinchot fought hard to build awareness of the importance of conservation and the thought that our public lands are our nations treasure owned and preserved for every United States citizen’s use and protection.

Since Idaho is my home state and a lot of the state is covered with wilderness I really identified and fell in love with this book. I remember in the 1980s when they named the area “The Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness Area,” because Frank Church fought for the preservation of the forest and the beautiful Salmon River.

I believe that it is as important to read aloud to each others as well as to our children. We need to make every effort to stay in touch with our natural world.

To Dare Mighty Things: The Life of Theodore Roosevelt

by Doreen Rappaport

This is a beautiful book with very large pictures. A great discussion book. Here are two quotes from the book that show his concern about protecting our American lands:

“We are not building this country for a day. It is to last through the ages.”

“There can be no greater issue than that of conservation in this country.”

Who Was Theodore Roosevelt?

Who Hq (Author) Michael Burgan (Author) Jerry Hoare (Illustrator)

This is a book about Roosevelts life. Chapter 7 is a chapter entitled “Defender of Nature”. The chapter starts “Some of his greatest successes were on an issue that was close to his heart—the environment. Years spent in the country’s forests and plains has taught him that animals and land need to be protected.”

Just a point of interest when I was sharing about these books with my grandson from Oregon he mentioned that he there was a forest named after Gifford Pinchot. That just goes to show you how much background knowledge you can gain from reading aloud and discussing.

Remember our job is to help children develop a love of reading during the process which will allow them to become fluently literate in both reading and writing.

Notes about me:

Jylene Morgan is a retired educator. She is passionate about the importance of reading aloud to children from top quality children’s books. Writing about her life experiences she captivates her audience by telling the tales of her family’s adventures. The first several books are written about funny exchanges that occur when human and wild animal’s lives come together.

To read more about me, my passion for reading aloud to children and my books go to Make sure you join our mailing list so you receive Jylene's "Most Treasured Books List". Books by Jylene Morgan are available fully distributed, check out your local book store, Amazon, or


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