Why Not Try an Audiobook?
August 25, 2011
It’s D.W. again. As stated in June, I am encouraging you to use the audiobooks in the MCPL system in new and fun ways.
This time I am going to talk about my experience with the Harry Potter series. My children were not interested in reading the books when they came out, and I had no reason to consider reading them myself. Then, I happened to see a portion of one of the movies based on a book in the series and began to wonder about the books.
I have to say that when I started the first book, I had a lot of prejudices about "popular" books, especially series. I would have bet that I was about to be disappointed in the quality of the story, and therefore glad my children had not "wasted" their time reading them, but I was curious. So, I opted to "read" the book while doing household chores using the audiobook format. I was quickly grabbed by the story, and looked forward to the rest of the series.
I tell this story to illustrate the use of audiobooks to begin the reading process. When a book is longer than the reader is used to, in a genre the reader is unfamiliar with, by an author that may be more difficult to follow, and is written using words specific to a time or location the reader finds more difficult to understand, etc.; audiobooks can be used as a jump-start. By hearing the book read aloud, the reader becomes engaged in the story and is willing to continue reading the book despite the challenges.
Again, I am encouraging you to rethink the uses of audiobooks. MCPL has an extensive collection of audiobooks and access to many more through their agreements with other library systems. Audiobooks aren’t just for those who can’t read the written word anymore.
Lone Jack Branch