In all our classes in school, we are asked to read out one or two paragraphs each from our textbooks. This sounds familiar to most of us, doesn’t it? Our teachers in school may have collectively done this because they are well aware of all the benefits that come with reading out loud.
Where many of us may have felt uncomfortable or anxious about reading out loud in class, we must remember that the intentions of our teacher were wound around the benefits of doing the same. We will also be taking a look at a list of these benefits in the article below.
Gather Information Regarding Basic English Skills and become proficient in the language and speak fluently with confidence. Try the Tips over here and Improve your English Writing and Speaking Skills.
How Does Reading Out Loud Help Improve Fluency?
There are multiple reasons why reading out loud helps improve fluency, and this concept is not only limited to English. Reading in any language is helpful to make our grasp on that language better, be it any language.
Here are some ways in which reading out loud to improve your fluency actually work:
- It increases your vocabulary.
- It helps you practise the correct sounds and pronunciations of the language.
- It allows you to practise how to use different grammatical nuances better in your speech.
- It helps improve memory and cognition that come into use during the speech.
- It acts as a practise ground for speaking another language.
- It exercises your vocal cords.
- It allows a person to develop their own style and way of speaking.
Let us now go into a bit more detail for all of these ways in which reading out loud helps improve fluency.
Reading, in general, allows us to improve upon our vocabulary because when we read, we learn a lot of new words. Of course, books which force us to whip out a dictionary every few lines can be annoying, but this does wonders for your vocabulary.
The trick over here is to read the text out loud without bothering much about what it is you are reading, and later, going back to it to read it meaningfully and understand what you have read out loud. This is very effective in helping you get the other benefits of reading out loud as well as increasing the range of your vocabulary.
Pronunciation and Sounds
This is the biggest advantage that reading out loud has over your fluency or hold of a language. Reading out loud allows you to understand all the sounds that are in a language because when you are out of your head and saying the words out loud, you’re able to figure out how the words are pronounced.
Sometimes, it is easy to understand a language when someone is speaking it, but when we have to formulate the words ourselves, it can be tough. It can be difficult to get the words out that we already know, because our pronunciations may be slightly off. This is how reading out loud helps fluency, by helping you figure out and correct your sounds and pronunciations of a language.
It is relatively easy to learn about grammar, in terms of memorising conjugations and vocabulary. However, it is another thing when we want to put this into practise. Forming our own sentences in a language requires us to be able to put what we learnt about the language to use, and this may not occur on the first try.
Reading out loud, thus, allows a person to identify and put to use the appropriate grammar in the appropriate place. When saying this out loud, it allows us to realise what is grammatically right and what is grammatically wrong.
Memory and Cognition
When reading out loud, you will learn how to pronounce certain words and understand the nuances of the language. Once you have managed to figure this all out while reading out loud, it will remain in your memory for a long time, including the next time you’re reading out loud.
For example, while reading out loud, you may mispronounce the word “castle” the first time you read it out loud and say the ‘t’ sound. However, the next time you read, you will realise that this ‘t’ sound is actually silent, and you won’t make the same mistake again. You might, but it will take a few tries to get it right, which is why reading out loud is important.
It goes without saying that reading out loud helps you practise the language you’ve learnt in theory. Whatever has been mentioned before, i.e. vocabulary and grammar come into practise when reading out loud. When we read a sentence in our minds, fluency and correctness doesn’t matter, because it is all in our heads.
When speaking to someone, the point is to communicate with them, and for this, we need to be fluent in the language we are talking in. Therefore, reading out loud lets us practise our language, which then helps us become more fluent in that language when speaking it with others. It is great to practise, especially for pronunciations, when we are talking to someone out loud.
Reading out loud exercises your vocal cords, which is important for proper enunciation of words and sentences. This also brings clarity to your voice, so that while you are speaking, what you are saying can be clearly understood by the person listening to you.
While exercising your vocal cords is generally something we tell singers and vocalists, the same concept applies to when we are speaking as well. We don’t want our voices to catch in our throats while talking, right? Thus, exercising our vocal cords here becomes of utmost importance. Reading out loud is a brilliant exercise for exercising our vocal cords, which is all the more reason to do it.
Developing a Style of Speaking
We all have our own ways of speaking, and in anthropology, these are called ‘idiolects’. Idiolects refer to our personal ways of speaking, the kind of language we use and how we twist a language to make it comfortable for ourselves. Some people use a lot of filler words like “kind of” or “basically” in their sentences, or some people have a different way of asking a question than others.
Idiolects are personal to all of us, and without speaking, we can’t really develop one for ourselves. Here’s where reading out loud helps us – it allows us to create our own way and style of speaking without really having to hold a conversation with someone else. While reading out loud, we have to change our tone, pick up on where we need to use a higher pitch such as for questions, etc.
All in all, reading out loud is an incredibly efficient way to improve fluency in a language, be it any language which is new to us. It helps us build our vocabulary, learn the correct grammar, and it helps us remember how certain words are pronounced so that we can use this in our speech later. Aside from that, it allows us to put to practical use what we learn in theory about a language and it even helps us develop our own style of speaking and ways of enunciating what we want to say. Lastly, talking out loud makes us exercise our vocal cords, which is so important because no one wants their voices catching in their throats amidst an important speech or conversation.