Choosing the appropriate Dialogic Reading books

Dialogic Reading is a method scientifically proven to be valid in improving the learning and growth of children up to 12 years of age. The effects of this method have relevant consequences in the skills that children will develop and use for a lifetime, choosing the right books is essential.

Children from 3 to 5 years of age will choose books in which images prevail. Children up to 12 years old will choose books predominantly if not exclusively text-based. Independently from the choice of the book and age of children, it is mandatory that the contents and the story itself are of good quality. Classic children books as well as a selected number of contemporary books should be chosen, having in mind that the story must be interesting, reasonably profound in the sense that it seeks an explanation or e meaning of life and experiences, not repetitive, capable of stimulating the child’s imagination and thoughts.

The first scientific studies on Dialogic Reading began in the 1980s and addressed mainly preschool children and illustrated books suitable for that age of readers.
Since the 2000s, academic studies have been conducted with older children, with the collaboration of teachers and parents, based on books in which text prevails or even images are missing. These studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of Dialogic Reading even for older children. For example, the study by Flores, Pires & Souza, C. B. A. (2014) demonstrated the effectiveness of Dialogic Reading in a group of 7-8 year old children.

You should not be worried to endeavor reading with your children a book that may seem a little too difficult in terms of text. This, in fact, has proved to be an advantage because it challenges the child to understand the contents without frustrating effects because the parent or adult is there to explain the contents of the book. What should be primarily seeks is good quality in the contents of the story.

In conclusion, it can be said that the Dialogic Reading procedure is effective not only with younger children but also brings considerable benefits to older children up to 12 years of age, as discussion with the adult (parent and / or teacher) while reading brings positive stimuli, improves vocabulary and text comprehension, improves sentence construction and development, extends processing capacity of concepts, stimulates the use of the imagination in developing different scenarios in relation to the story being read and is reflected in the child’s relational and behavioral maturity. The adult will choose the appropriate level of discussion and vocabulary, depending on the age of the children.