• The Me Books Family

Debunking the difference between reading and listening

Updated: Jan 28, 2019

Is listening to an audio book the same as reading?

Audio books… What are they?

When it comes to books, as adults today, all we think about are physical copies of pages filled with words and illustrations that were bought from stores.

However, children of today have the privilege to be exposed to a new form books which are audio books. If your aim is to get your children to read and love books, you might wonder… Is listening to a book ‘cheating’?

Although technically your child is not reading a book word for word, audio books can be an equally great platform when it comes to cultivating your child’s interest in reading as well as expanding his vocabulary.

Entering a world of imagination

Print books: Illustrations that accompany the text in print books help to shape you child’s imagination. Print books gives your child the opportunity to learn new things as he is introduced to colours, shapes, objects, animals and so on. Hence, making print books a great learning tool for you to use to not only bond with your child but teach too.

Audio books:

Audio books on the other hand, does have its benefits when it comes expanding your child’s imaginations. Unlike print books, audio books create a safe and friendly world for your child’s imagination to enter. As he hears the story being read out load without any assisting printed materials, it will allow your child to explore an imaginative world with endless possibilities as he is being led through the story from beginning till the end.

Read on as we debunk the positive differences between print and audio books.

See also: Do Textbooks Still Have a Place in Modern Classrooms?


Print books:

Physical books have been long known to help with language skills. As your child reads, this

will help him identify new words and how to spell it. It will also help your child learn how to use the particular word in a sentence.

Audio books:

Listening to words being read out loud does help with pronunciation. Plus, it also helps a

child learn more about when to use the word. Although, it is important that your child has a basic understanding of the language as this will then help better as he can match the pronunciation to the word in spelling.

Focus, focus, focus

Print books:

Print books require lots of attention from a child and it is especially challenging if your child

gets restless easily or has a short attention span. When reading a book, your child’s other senses are alert as well and if your child is placed in an environment that’s noisy or busy, this would generally make it more difficult for your child to focus when reading. Hence, it is important as parents, to be there to guide them and help your child to re-focus and this could yield positive results. The good news is, it won’t be that difficult to find the point at which your child zoned out.

Audio books:

Audio books however, could help with your child’s attention span and focus as your child

pays attention to the exciting narration of the story that’s filled with music and sound effects too. Of course, if your child does zone out, it is more difficult to go back and find the point before your child lost his focus. Hence, in order to get a good picture of the entire story, children are expected to pay full attention and if it is possible to do so, this then trains your child’s attention span when engaging in an activity.

Reading and listening are both important platforms for your child’s development. While some of its benefits are unique to the individual platforms, there is no doubt that they work hand in hand.

Above all that, what’s most important is your you, as parents, to journey with your child through every storybook adventure!





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