Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Audio Books Online

Many special education teachers and reading teachers ask me about sites that have stories online where students can HEAR the book being read to them. While there are several sites that do this, very few of them have the words or captions that go along with the passage. These sites make good learning stations for students in your classroom. Here are some of my favorites:

Storyline Online is a website sponsored by the Screen Actors Guild. There are several celebrities who offer their talents to read a best-loved children’s book on video. Stream the video to watch the actor read the story complete with story book pictures and captions that you can turn on or off. A few of my favorites on this site are: Stellaluna, Knots on a Counting Rope, and The Night I Followed the Dog. This is a GREAT SITE! This site is for elementary school students. is a site that boasts “literature for your eyes and ears”, and they’re right. The website features novels, poetry, historical documents, children’s books, and short stories that you can read and follow along as someone reads it to you. You can stream the audio or download it. I especially like the poetry section since it helps students hear how poetry should be read with pauses and breaks. Famous pieces that are featured (and here are just a FEW): The Highwayman, The Raven, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, and The Tale of Two Cities. This site primarily targets secondary students, but there are some selections for primary aged kids. is a good source for digital text online, although it doesn’t read the text to you. However, many teachers have the use of text-to-speech software that allows them to copy and paste text into the program to read it to the student. This site has items for elementary and secondary students.

At Childtopia, there are seven stories that you can hear read out loud to you. This is definitely geared for elementary school students.
My favorite of these sites used to be Tumble Books - not featured here since they have recently turned their site into a paid site. Previously their content had been completely free. If your school is willing to pay for a subscription, this site would be worth your time and money.

Read, Write, Think: Comic Generator
Sight Words with Samson
Madlibs online for kids

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