Read Aloud: Ignite Your Life

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Three minutes ago I read a mind-blowing letter.

A letter written by sophomore Katie Cushman who is now studying at Stonehill College in Massachusetts.

She wrote it in response to a classroom assignment about reading theory, the power and benefits of reading aloud.

She did not write it to me.

The letter was published in the Levittown Tribune, which I read by chance.

Katie - who is an elementary education major and attends  Reading Theory and Instruction class - writes in that letter:

I’ve always had a love for reading since I was a little girl, but I never realized the importance of it until after reading this book.

Katie added that she needs "to spread the word about the power of reading, especially reading aloud", after reading a special book.

Before she read this special book Katie says "had no idea about the impact that reading aloud could have on a child. 

Not only does reading aloud broaden a child’s vocabulary, increase their attention span, and improve their test scores, but it also creates a stronger family bond".

(T)Release a Read Aloud Spark!

A mighty flame followeth a tiny spark.
           Dante Alighieri

More than 100 posts have been published on since this blog was started back in September 2010.

The fabulous book that Katie is talking about is well known by many, even though I am guilty of not mentioning it sufficiently.

It deserves to be in the spotlight all the time.

Many parents refer to it as the read aloud "Bible".

The book Katie is talking about is The Read Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease.

A game changer for many families.

Trelease's book was one of the main factors that helped me to believe ... in myself. 

Jim gave me the confidence to do it. 

Not just read aloud.

No ... I always knew I could read aloud to my kids, mind you. Of course I knew.

Reading aloud - everyone can do it.

Before I read his book I did not know that reading aloud could be the tipping point. 

A gateway.

I never knew that my small effort to read many quality books would:

... spark a life-long interest for reading in my kids.

....change their lives forever and for the better.

... help me to forge such a strong bond of love with my twins.

... ensure that my twins would become greater human beings.

... be closely monitored by my son, as sons usually want to emulate their fathers.

I never knew that reading aloud was not about reading aloud.

Jim Trelease also shared with me the priceless secret that reading aloud was an infallible recipe.

The Read Aloud Handbook gave me the courage to believe that I could help my children embrace knowledge from a young age and that I could help improve their destiny with children's books.

Their brains are working in fifth gear because of books these days.

I postponed my review of The Read Aloud Handbook for so long, because I was afraid  that I would not do the book justice.

And then Katie's mind-blowing letter appeared.

So, for now, pray read Katie's letter in full. I will review The Read Aloud Handbook one day, but let Katie speak now.

I will not republish her letter in full on my blog, so please do read her glorious letter on the power of reading aloud in the Levittown Tribune.

I will leave you with one more important quote from Katie's letter:

I am urging everyone, parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and teachers to please get involved and read aloud to your kids! 

The Read Aloud Handbook is a must read for all teachers and parents. The book is full of great knowledge, personal stories and evidence of the power of reading. 

Please spread the word to your families and friends. Read aloud and see for yourself how great it really is!

Go on ... read Katie's letter.

Go on ... leave a comment to tell me which book will you pick up to read today.


  1. I'm a consultant with a company called Usborne books.  I use Trelease's book and reference it often when I'm telling people about the wonderful books our company makes.  There is no greater thing we can do for our kids than to read to them and instill a love for reading early.  I'm so excited every time I get to tell people about this book.  Thanks so much for putting the read-aloud message out there!

  2. Hi Jaime,

    Thanks so much for your encouragement. Indeed, as you say, "there is no greater thing we can do for our kids than to read to them and instill a love for reading early".  

    Reading aloud seems to be banal when you talk about it. 

    But when you do it - especially with great children's books - it is astounding. 

    Usborne indeed makes wonderful books - we have almost all the Puzzle books and probably around (take a seat) 60-70 of the First Reading and Young Reading books at home. As well as the Farmyard Tales and Phonics stories collections. All are incredible!

    Jim Trelease's book is ground-breaking and probably the best investment I made in my life. 

    Thanks for taking the time to leave a message!

    Read Aloud Dad

    RE: Jaime Treadwell 

  3. Never underestimate the power of reading aloud to children.  My children are grown now, but they tell me that their best memory is of me reading to them, no matter how busy I was.

  4. Hi Darlene,

    I'd love to hear that from my twins one day! How beautiful! 

    We are reading The Mouse and the Motorcycle as well as Alice Through The Looking Glass right now - and my kids are enthralled! 

    Thanks for everything you do to promote children's literacy!

    Read Aloud Dad

    Re: @8310eb5503078d5f7dcae477607de4bd