professornana (professornana) wrote,

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Reading with my Ears

The Nerdy Book Club was nice enough to let me post today ( I admit that selecting only 10 audiobooks was a painful task. I opted for a deliberate approach, wanting to include fiction and nonfiction, audio for younger and older listeners, and a large range of narrative styles. One person noted that she was sad not to see the Harry Potter books narrated by Jim Dale on the list. I omitted them on purpose. Somehow, I assume that everyone will have already jumped on the chance to listen to them. I suspect, though, that is simply wrong on my part. Since I love audio so much, I already know that if Jim Dale narrates, I will listen.

So, I think I will take a few days off from ranting and raving about CCSS (though all of you should go read this in the meantime. There will be a quiz ;-) and concentrate a bit more on audiobooks. So, here are some scattered thoughts about audio. Over the next few days, I will offer something a tad more organized and coherent (I hope).

1. Listening to a book is what I call reading with my ears. It is NOT cheating. It is NOT passive. There is no skimming in audio. Listening to a book is ACTIVE.

2. I only listen to unabridged audio. I want the whole story and not the Reader's Digest condensed version (as I type that I realize that there is a wide swath of readers who will have no ideas what I am referencing).

3. You can multi-task with audiobooks. It is possible for me to drive and listen. While I have seen folks read while driving, it is not something I recommend. I can clean house, cook, and do other chores while listening.

4. Listening to audiobooks adds so many books to my list of books read each month.

5. Sometimes I listen to books I have already read. Sometimes not. I think there are some things to explore here. My responses are, of course, different.

6. By and large, authors should not narrate their own books. Exceptions: Neil Gaiman, Jack Gantos. For the most part, though, I have been disappointed in the reading by an author. It is especially egregious in adult audiobooks IMHO.

7. There are some narrators who could read a menu and I would listen. I will post about some of them this coming week.

8. There are some terrific lists out there for audio files. I will post out some resources and lists this week, too.

9. Amazon allows you to listen to a sample of the audiobooks they sell. You can also hear samples at Audiofile and in Karin Perry's Audiotalk column for VOYA.

10. Teaching kids about listening covers a ton of objectives/standards/skills. Not that this is the point, but I thought I would mention that it is tied to learning, too.

Much more to come this week.
Tags: audiobooks, reading with my ears

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