All About Reading

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Overcome the Fear of Reading Aloud

Reading aloud can be rather frightening.  It does not matter if you are reading in front of your class or reading during a wedding.  Being in front of others makes our knees shake.  Speaking clearly with others watching is indescribable.  The good news is that you can overcome it.

Yes, fear of reading aloud is psychological.  Knowing that does not take it away.  The fear is real.  Why are we so afraid to read aloud?  We want to succeed.

What if we look funny?  What if we have food all on our shirt?  What if everyone laughs?  What if I mispronounce words?  All these “what if’s” are real.  They can make a grown person cry.  They can cause a child to hate reading.

If you really want to overcome the fear of reading aloud or help your child conquer the terror, start by getting familiar with reading in general.  If reading is dreaded when it is done silently, how much more despised it is when forced to be done out loud in front of other people.  Read silently and gain confidence with books before even attempting to read out loud.

Once standard reading confidence is obtained, reading aloud can be tackled.  Do not jump into reading before a hundred people.  Begin reading in front of a mirror.  Progress to reading in front of a parent or spouse.  Make sure that you gradually increase the size of your audience.  When reading in front of one person is comfortable, read in front of the whole family.  Take a part in a family read night and get in some practice.  

Before long, speaking in front of ten, twenty, or thirty people will not be so terrifying.  The fear does not go away over night and can sometimes resurrect itself.  Always take a deep breath before reading and never rush.  Rushing causes mistakes which increases the fear.

Reading aloud can be very enjoyable once fear has been conquered.  Do not let fear control you and deprive you of such reading pleasure.

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