How audiobooks support literacy

For Immediate Release
Tue, 12/06/2011


CHICAGO— In “Listening to Learn: Audiobooks Supporting Literacy,” published by ALA Editions, librarians Sharon Grover and Lizette D. Hannegan show how audiobooks present excellent opportunities to engage the attention of young people while also advancing literacy. Drawing on decades of experience and research, they connect audiobooks with K-12 curricula, demonstrating how the format can support national learning standards and literacy skills. Complete with a research bibliography and resource guide, the book:

  • Presents a concise history of the audiobook, with commentary from experts in the field;
  • Shows librarians how to harness their library’s audiobook collection and practice effective collection development;
  • Includes thematic lists of quality titles and suggested group listening activities, ready for use in the classroom by teachers;
  • Helps parents use audiobooks as an incentive to read and encourage skill development.

Grover is a longtime audiobook listener and reviewer. She has served on and chaired Selected Audiobooks for Young Adults (now called Amazing Audiobooks for Young Adults), as well as served on the inaugural Odyssey Award Committee, and as chair in 2010. Currently, she is head of the Youth Services Department at the Hedberg Public Library in Janesville, Wis., where she shares favorite audiobook titles with her young patrons. She has written articles and columns and presented workshops — many of them with Hannegan — on using audiobooks to promote literacy.

Hannegan retired from the Arlington (Va.) public schools, after 22 years as an elementary and middle school librarian and district library media supervisor. Her advocacy for audiobooks has resulted in conference presentations, grants for the use of audiobooks in instructional settings and journal and review articles. She has been an Audies judge, a 2010 Odyssey Award Committee member and is the 2012 Odyssey Award chair.

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