Educators at all levels - from elementary school to middle school to high school - are increasingly frustrated about traditional approaches to reading. Although they're under enormous pressure to "teach to the test," and achieve the benchmarks mandated by the No Child Left Behind Act, teachers understand that children have a multitude of learning styles. Not every child responds to the same teaching approach or to the same materials. That's why teachers are turning to children's books, children's music, and kids DVDs that are designed to engage children who are read/write learners, who are auditory learners, and who are kinesthetic learners.
Why are these books and ancillary materials successful? Because they build upon and complement one another, resulting in increased learning and higher test scores. For example, the books are written to expand vocabulary, but at the same time are designed to engage kids' creativity with role-playing activities. Similarly, audio books for children use the read-aloud model to instill critical listening skills. The best educational children's book systems also offer posters that depict characters in the books, and enable children to express their creativity through coloring.
To teachers, one of the best attributes of these educational series is that the kids' books are aligned with standardized curricula and thus meet local and state requirements. Moreover, some systems provide a step-by-step program that teaches writing skills (a subject sorely lacking in many schools), and that integrates the program into a school success plan that transforms all students into achievers.
For educators, one of the bonuses of adopting these kinds of children's books into the classroom is that the books, children's music, and kids' DVDs do more than teach academic skills. Indeed, they also teach life skills, such as conflict resolution and self-control. Typically, these materials are also infused with character building lessons. For example, safety might be addressed in one song, while friendship might be covered in another.
Upon reflection, it makes sense that these kinds of multidisciplinary materials are making inroads into schools. Not only do they engage children with many different learning styles, but they enable children's natural talents to be recognized and nurtured. Whether a child is a budding artist, actor, or writer, these materials enable him or her to shine. And, there's little doubt that kids achieve more and develop a greater love for learning when they succeed.
At a time when teachers around the country are faced with increasingly scarce resources, they are recognizing the value in adopting children's books, children's music, and kids' DVDs that are multidisciplinary and can do double- or triple-duty in the classroom. Children are engaged, test scores rise, and kids are excited about learning. There's not a better combination of attributes.
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Chris Robertson is an author of Majon International, one of the worlds MOST popular internet marketing companies.
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