Have a boring job? Need something to keep you busy while you’re driving on the long road home?
Listening to audiobooks could be the answer. It’s not only a craze more people are buying into these days, but a way to help reluctant readers learn and bored minds stay active.
The benefits are overwhelming, and the ones listed below are only some of the ways listening to a book can help you become a better reader and a more well-rounded person.
If you’ve ever heard a little kid pronounce the word “naive” as “knave,” then you probably assumed they had only ever read the word in a book. When you see words, you learn their definitions, most often by context. But when you hear the words, you also learn how to pronounce them.
This not only helps with your vocabulary but also saves you the embarrassment at your next dinner party of saying mer-laht when you meant merlot. Don’t be afraid to listen to audiobooks instead of reading a physical book. You may gain a few new words and get some help with your pronunciation in the process.
Gives Sheer Pleasure
Sometimes it’s more fun to listen to someone else read than the voices in your head (or your voice, if that’s what you hear when you read). Instead, someone like Rosalyn Landor can use her sultry tones and woo you while you listen to a great book. Who wouldn’t want to feel how smooth the Irish lilt or another accent comes off her tongue while experiencing an escape into another land through the story?
Some audiobooks have more than one narrator. Some have a whole host of them, or even an entire production behind it, with sound effects, actors, and a presentation that hearkens back to old radio shows and performances. The fun you can have using your imagination and experiencing a story through sound is a different experience than when you’re reading it.
Allows Readers To Experience More Challenging Books
If you’re limited by your reading level, you can only realistically read certain books. While you could struggle through the harder ones, it isn’t very fun and you probably aren’t going to try. Yet with audiobooks, you can hear the stories that everyone else loves without having to put forth as much effort.
As you listen, hard words won’t trip you up. They may snag your thoughts briefly, but they flow from the narrator’s tongue fluidly, and you’ll pick up the meaning through context. You’ll be able to experience books you thought were beyond your reach when you listen to them instead of picking up a real book that’s too difficult.
Provides a Role Model
Children get pushed to read aloud to their parents and teachers and peers in school and at home. But while practice does help them get better at this skill, listening to better readers gives them someone to emulate. If they can hear the way someone else puts expression into their voice and conveys meaning with their tone, anxious out-loud readers will hear examples and can grow their skills another way.
Listening to Audiobooks Improves Listening Skills
You ever notice that sometimes you drift off and quit paying attention when you’re listening to the story? The more you listen to audiobooks, the more you remember that you have to pay attention or you miss the good parts.
Listening to audiobooks helps train your brain to pay attention to what it’s hearing through your ears. You learn to listen to the words and process them, rather than drifting away and hearing but not listening. Better listening skills can benefit you in all walks of life, from improving relationships to giving you a boost at work.
Some kids don’t like to read. Even some adults aren’t into it. But in schools, teachers still focus so much on getting kids to enjoy reading.
Rather than bribing them with free personal-size pizzas and other fun prizes, sometimes the easiest tactic is to get them to listen to the story. If a child hears the book, they may be more interested than if they struggle through decoding the words and phrases themselves. If they know the story is going to be worth it, then they might be more inclined to do the work to read the words on a page.
Technically, multitasking is constant partial attention, but even so, audiobooks are great tools for helping us achieve more things in the same period. You can listen to a story (or whatever genre you like) while you work on an assembly line, paint a picket fence, or do anything with your hands. It’s a way to keep your mind active while your body is busy.
That’s why so many people love to listen while they exercise. It takes their attention away from the pain and the difficulty of the hard work they’re doing and transports them somewhere far away.
Do you ever feel like you’re cheating when you listen to a book on tape (or CD, or digital borrow from your library)? Like somehow you should be doing more work than sitting there and listening to audiobooks?
Cut yourself a little slack. Audiobooks are as good for you as reading physical pages, and there are so many great benefits here. Whether you’re using your eyes or your ears, you should enjoy yourself and your story.
For more healthy and realistic ways to experience literature, read more on our website.