I’ve written frequently about our free Lit2Go audiobook collection. I’ll paste links to other posts at the bottom. Today, I’d like to share five reasons to include audiobooks in remote instruction.

1. Audiobooks give students a chance to rest their eyes. Too much screentime is a strain on the eyes. We forget to blink. Staring at a screen locks our bodies in a position much more rigid than even that of sitting an a classroom chair where students at least have opportunities to look up and focus at a more natural distance than 16 inches. Listening to an audiobook away from the computer screen is a welcome break.

2. Audiobooks free up a shared computer. In many households, several siblings may need to share a computer—along with a parent or two also working from home. Having periods when students are listening to an audiobook allows them to use any MP3 player, freeing up the computer for other members of the household.

3. Audiobooks oxygenate the brain. Well, they do if the student is moving around instead of stuck sitting at a computer. Downloadable MP3 files can be played on any compatible device and allow the student to go outside, get some exercise, or just take a walk while listening.

4. Audiobooks can differentiate experiences. Teachers have always appreciated the ability to select audio passages with different levels of difficulty for their students, but in a time when many students are essentially locked down in their homes, a variety of audiobooks can give students a wide range of different experiences to discuss with their classmates. That sort of sharing and social interaction is important at all times, but especially so when the only thing students may have to share with their friends is how bored they are. A wide variety of audiobooks also allows students to follow their own interests.

5. Audiobooks can stimulate the imagination. The best thing about listening to an audiobook is the pictures. Think how often you’ve looked forward to a movie adaptation of a favorite book only to be disappointed at the visuals. A good imagination can produce imagery beyond even the CGI of the best film studios. With proper exercise, that is. Listening to audiobooks can exercise that imagination.

Explore the Lit2Go collection today!

Roy Winkelman is a 40+ year veteran teacher of students from every level kindergarten through graduate school. As the former Director of FCIT, he began the Center's focus on providing students with rich content collections from which to build their understanding. When not glued to his keyboard, Dr. Winkelman can usually be found puttering around his tomato garden in Pittsburgh. Questions about this post or suggestions for a future topic? Email me at winkelma@usf.edu. To ensure that your email is not blocked, please do not change the subject line. Thank you!

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