10 read aloud commandments

Lately I was looking up one of my favourite authors, Mem Fox, and came across her 10 read-aloud commandments. I thought I would share them because I liked them a lot and I want to try to do them myself! I’m not a parent; However, I do believe that as a teacher a lot of these commandments apply as we are being role models and we are helping other people’s children learn to read.

Mem Fox’s Ten Read Aloud Commandments

1. Spend at least ten wildly happy minutes every single day reading aloud.
2. Read at least three stories a day: it may be the same story three times. Children need to hear a thousand stories before they can begin to learn to read.
3. Read aloud with animation. Listen to your own voice and don’t be dull, or flat, or boring. Hang loose and be loud, have fun and laugh a lot.
4. Read with joy and enjoyment: real enjoyment for yourself and great joy for the listeners.
5. Read the stories that the kids love, over and over and over again, and always read in the same ‘tune’ for each book: i.e. with the same intonations on each page, each time.
6. Let children hear lots of language by talking to them constantly about the pictures, or anything else connected to the book; or sing any old song that you can remember; or say nursery rhymes in a bouncy way; or be noisy together doing clapping games.
7. Look for rhyme, rhythm or repetition in books for young children, and make sure the books are really short.
8. Play games with the things that you and the child can see on the page, such as letting kids finish rhymes, and finding the letters that start the child’s name and yours, remembering that it’s never work, it’s always a fabulous game.
9. Never ever teach reading, or get tense around books.
10. Please read aloud every day, mums and dads, because you just love being with your child, not because it’s the right thing to do.


About ashleymcdougall

I'm a candidate teacher finishing my last year of studies at the University of Regina. I'm focusing my studies on Early Childhood Education.
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2 Responses to 10 read aloud commandments

  1. Andrea Danderfer says:

    I love these ten commandments. I personally enjoy reading so I am a huge advocate for how important it is. Being that I am in secondary education I feel that we tend to forget the importance of kids reading for pleasure even if it is just a magazine. It seems like we get kids to read to gain information which can take the enjoyment out of it. I remember in my high school experience we were never allowed to read magazines during our assigned reading time. I think that this really pushed kids away from wanting to read. Who cares if books have pictures or if kids read magazines during assigned reading time? I just think it is so important for teachers to help their students rediscover the joys of reading.

  2. My thoughts exactly! You said it better than I could!

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