TeachersFirst's Audio Books with Text

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These educator-reviewed resources from TeachersFirst offer audio books with accompanying text so all students, including emerging readers and ESL/ELL learners, can experience literature and other reading selections in audio form as they reinforce and inspire literacy skills and enjoyment. Be sure to explore each site, as many include multiple types of activities, including the audio books and texts. The helpful reviews suggest ideas for ways to use the books in the classroom or outside of school to reinforce literacy skills, improve English skills, or study literature in new ways. See TeachersFirst's full collection of audio book resources and interactive audio book resources for other options.

 

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Crawford the Cat - Perennial Pictures Film Cooperation

Grades
K to 2
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Crawford the Cat is a website that teaches young children about health issues like brushing your teeth and social skills like working together. There are numerous 5-minute videos teaching...more
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Crawford the Cat is a website that teaches young children about health issues like brushing your teeth and social skills like working together. There are numerous 5-minute videos teaching students about good table manners, trying new food, exercise, colds and flu, and several other health/science topics. The site includes videos, online books, printables and interactive games.

tag(s): dental health (15), hygiene (10), preK (231), social skills (24)

In the Classroom

This site works really well with an interactive whiteboard or projector. Students can view the videos on the board and then play the games on the interactive board. The printables can be used by an entire class or for individual students who need skills reinforcement, and the books can be used as a center. The students have the choice of having the books read to them or reading on their own, so the site addresses the abilities of all students. During times of remote or distance learning, put a link to this site on your class web page for parents and students to use at home, with directions for what you want them to do, of course. Then ask students to create a video response about what they learned using Flipgrid, reviewed here.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Unite for Literacy Library - Unite for Literacy

Grades
K to 8
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The Unite for Literacy Library offers many online books for young readers with audio. Browse through the home page to choose books to read from the library shelves. Narrow down ...more
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The Unite for Literacy Library offers many online books for young readers with audio. Browse through the home page to choose books to read from the library shelves. Narrow down your choices using picture icons for different themes such as animals or families. Select and click a book to read. Click the speaker icon to hear each page. The narration is also available in many languages from Arabic to Vietnamese.

tag(s): audio books (20), independent reading (105), preK (231)

In the Classroom

This site is one you must bookmark if you work with young readers! Create a link to the site on classroom computers for students to explore and listen to books on their own. Unite for Literacy is perfect for use with ESL/ELL students for reading and hearing books in both English and their native language. Share a link to the site on your website or newsletter for use at home or use during remote learning. During remote learning, consider assigning your elementary students reading and follow up activities using Symbaloo, reviewed here. Symbaloo is an excellent bookmarking tool to use with elementary students due to the easy to use design and use of icons for identifying information readily. World language teachers can use this site to have students listen to books in the language they are learning.

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Open Culture - Open Culture

Grades
4 to 12
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Explore 1000 free audio books. This collection includes classics and contemporary literature. Books come in a variety of formats, from e-files to MP3's to Youtube. The alphabetical...more
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Explore 1000 free audio books. This collection includes classics and contemporary literature. Books come in a variety of formats, from e-files to MP3's to Youtube. The alphabetical list indicates which format or formats each book is available in. This easy-to-read site doe, however, have ads and links to other resources.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): audio books (20), independent reading (105), listening (70)

In the Classroom

Students could download independent reading books onto their portable devices. This is perfect for a BYOD or 1:1 classroom. Remind students of this great collection before breaks and summer vacations! Provide this link on your class website. Begin a classroom review magazine. Have students create mindmaps about characters or the plot. Challenge students to write summaries and other types of responses to the books they read. Have the students use a tool like Zoho Show (similar to Powerpoint, but easier and free) - reviewed here. ESL and special education students may find it useful to listen to books they are reading in class, if those titles are available.

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Listen and Read: Reading Activities for Early Learners - Scholastic

Grades
K to 3
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This site offers short, non-fiction readings at two beginning levels of difficulty. You can read the story yourself or click to hear it line by line as you read. After ...more
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This site offers short, non-fiction readings at two beginning levels of difficulty. You can read the story yourself or click to hear it line by line as you read. After reading, choose a review activity such as hearing the vocabulary words again. The subjects include Community Workers, Animals, Environmental Studies, Social Studies, History, Civics & Government, and Plants & Flowers.

tag(s): audio books (20), guided reading (37), preK (231), vocabulary development (87)

In the Classroom

Use this site in early elementary grades to help students begin to read and interpret informational text (a key piece of Common Core). Because of its multiple levels, you can easily use this site to differentiate. Share the stories on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Assign each student a different community worker to learn about. Have the students learn three new facts about their community worker to share with the class during a social studies lesson on communities. Have your ESL/ELL or learning support students write their own comprehension questions and answers based on the information to check their own comprehension and to exchange with their classmates.

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We Do Listen Foundation - We Do Listen Foundation

Grades
K to 3
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Songs, audio books, lesson plans, and more abound at this fabulous site for young children! At We Do Listen you will find activities to build character traits (such as honesty)...more
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Songs, audio books, lesson plans, and more abound at this fabulous site for young children! At We Do Listen you will find activities to build character traits (such as honesty) and social skills (such as anti-bullying). There are many audio books, with text included. Choose the lessons link to find printable lessons to accompany each book to teach character traits and social skills. There is also online coloring and a place to write and color your own story! Download song videos to your computer for use at any time. Choose the color and print your own book to color on paper, computer, and create stick and paper puppets.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): bullying (52), character education (63), ebooks (35), preK (231), social skills (24)

In the Classroom

All primary classrooms should take advantage of this wonderful tool. Share the interactive books and songs on your projector and interactive whiteboard. Use the songs, stories, and lesson plans to teach about various character traits: honesty, anti-bullying, good sportsmanship, courage, and more. Use these stories during class meetings to discuss issues happening in your own classroom. Share a link to the site with parents as a resource for use at home. Share the songs with your PE teacher to reinforce the concepts during movement activities.

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Learn English Kids - British Council

Grades
K to 8
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This kids' branch of Learn English (created in the UK) contains interactives, short stories, crafts, songs, and even an opportunity for students to help their younger brothers and sisters...more
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This kids' branch of Learn English (created in the UK) contains interactives, short stories, crafts, songs, and even an opportunity for students to help their younger brothers and sisters learn English. A free log-in allows you access to printed versions of the stories (with questions), the ability to make comments, enter competitions, answer polls, and even create a "character." Another log in for teachers and parents opens up suggestions for teaching and using the resources of the site. Professionals can also find video tips and access to helpful articles. Access to the site is available in other languages such as Chinese and French, all aimed at teaching English. A text help feature using "BrowseAloud" opens up the English learning to students with vision or reading challenges. Note that vocabulary used is British, so you may need to explain a few words to US or Canadian students, e.g. "rubbish bin."
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): interactive stories (18), preK (231), songs (40), vocabulary development (87)

In the Classroom

Primary grade and preK teachers will find many useful interactives for basic skills like colors and phonics on this site, even though it is intended for learning English. Share the activities as a center or for extra practice for struggling students. Check with your administration about whether students can register individually for the site. Introduce this site to your class on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Make a shortcut to this site on classroom computers and have your ELL/ESL students use it as one of your learning stations. Teachers can print flashcards for survival English vocabulary such as clothes, food, parts of the body, jobs etc.; accompanying activities provide reinforcement for vocabulary. Learn English Kids changes weekly, offering weekly activities, opinion polls, learning through songs, playground fun, and more. The read-aloud stories are a wonderful option for beginning readers and even non-readers. Speech/language clinicians will join ESL and primary teachers in using the many activities on this site. It even has sorting activities such as fruits/vegetables (see "Food"). Although the interface is graphically appealing, by clicking on "Topics," users can find activities, songs, and games all organized by subject. There is also a large section for parents to help their child at home. Short stories and other interactive features of the site would work well with special education students, too. Be sure to share this link with parents of your ELL students if they have Internet access at home.

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My Young Child - Early Parenting Foundation

Grades
K to 3
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Find online stories to read with young children and help build values. Each title states the value taught: honesty, patience, self-esteem, respect, forgiveness, and fairness. Stories...more
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Find online stories to read with young children and help build values. Each title states the value taught: honesty, patience, self-esteem, respect, forgiveness, and fairness. Stories can be read together or children can watch a video and follow along with the story. The site includes a section for parents with tips on reading with children and promoting good values. The educators section of the site has tips for using the site in the classroom and includes more ideas for parents.

tag(s): bullying (52), child development (24), literacy (82), parent conferences (22), parents (61)

In the Classroom

These short videos/audio books are perfect to share on your interactive whiteboard or projector during class meeting or lesson on honesty or other character values. Share this site on your classroom website or newsletters for students to access at home and to share reading tips with parents. Videos can be embedded on your website or blog for review. This is a winner to share at parent conferences in primary grades!

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ESL Bits - Skip Reske

Grades
5 to 12
3 Favorites 1  Comments
 
Don't let the title mislead you! Find listening and reading activities for any listener who enjoys audio stories at a teen and adult level, including the advanced English language learner....more
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Don't let the title mislead you! Find listening and reading activities for any listener who enjoys audio stories at a teen and adult level, including the advanced English language learner. There are short stories, books, radio scripts, and songs to listen to and read, as well as English idioms, sayings, and slang. You'll also find a Reading Comprehension and Test Preparation area with interactive activities to help students read and understand English and prepare for reading exams. Unlike many audio book sites, this one includes recent and popular selections for almost anyone, including teachers and parents! Don't miss classic radio shows perfect for discovering life in 20th century decades past.

tag(s): listening (70), radio (22), reading comprehension (121), short stories (16), test prep (70)

In the Classroom

Project a story or song on an interactive whiteboard or projector for group listening, reading along, and discussion. Literature teachers can use the site for a class novel, so lower readers can have audio support at home for listening and review. You could have small groups of students listen to different short stories, and make up Bloom's type questions for the next group of students to answer, or they could turn the story into a Reader's Theater piece and video tape it, or perform it live for the class. Share the videos using a tool such as SchoolTube reviewed here. This is a terrific site to list on your class website for students to use for at-home practice or enjoyment. For elementary and middle school students, you will want to provide the specific url for the selection you want them to use so they are reading articles appropriate in content for their age group. If you supervise a study hall, keep this link handy as a listening option for students who "don't have any homework."

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Excellent resource! alma grimaldi, , Grades: 7 - 9

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Aesops Fables Online Collection - John R Long Star Systems

Grades
1 to 10
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Come on in and enjoy the ageless and timeless wisdom of Aesop and his Fables at this award winning site. There are a total of 638 Fables, indexed in table ...more
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Come on in and enjoy the ageless and timeless wisdom of Aesop and his Fables at this award winning site. There are a total of 638 Fables, indexed in table format, with morals listed. Aseop lived 2,500 yeas ago and never wrote any tales down. Ambrose Pierce, Jean De La Fontaine I, Rev. George Fyler Townsend, and Hans Christian Andersen have retold these tales. A life history of Aesop is included. Some tales include audio narration, while all are in written format.

tag(s): folktales (34)

In the Classroom

Aesops Fables, comprehensive resource for fable collection is necessary for every classroom. Have a very extensive collection of life, history, morals, and fables. Use during language arts as part of a genre study or as part of literary themes. Use on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Use on individual computers and include in centers. During Writing Workshop, find ways to change the morals into modern stories. Use as scripts for Readers' Theater, podcasts, or reading comprehension. During character development, challenge students to find ways to incorporate into lessons.

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ABCya - ABCYA.com, l.l.c,

Grades
K to 6
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ABCya.com, developed by a web developer turned computer teacher, provides educational games, videos, and activities for elementary students. Nearly every subject is included. Simply...more
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ABCya.com, developed by a web developer turned computer teacher, provides educational games, videos, and activities for elementary students. Nearly every subject is included. Simply click on your grade level (K-5) and find what is available under language arts, math, and other subjects. Specific topics range from basic typing activities to creating word clouds to grammar games (at all levels) and so much more. The interactives are teacher approved and offer colorful and attention grabbing ways for learning. Opportunities for sharing on Facebook, tweeting, and sharing on social bookmarking sites are incorporated. This is a MUST SEE site for elementary teachers looking for some great practice sites for basic skills!

tag(s): alphabet (48), decimals (98), drawing (57), fractions (179), game based learning (155), geometric shapes (134), keyboarding (30), latitude (9), literacy (82), longitude (9), number sense (75), numbers (136), operations (89), preK (231)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector, demonstrate how to use the specific tool/activity. Create a learning center on your whiteboard or on individual laptops and allow students to try it out on their own. List this as a student and parent resource on your classroom website. Use this site to informally assess skills to tell you which students to allow to do alternative work or go ahead. Allow your gifted students to explore new concepts while providing necessary reinforcement for those learners that need a technology-inspired method to help master learning goals. This is an excellent tool for differentiating. Provide as an anticipatory guide for new units.

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News English Lessons - Sean Banville

Grades
4 to 12
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This site, created by Australian Sean Banville of "Breaking News English" (reviewed here), has high interest, "easier" news for students to read and...more
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This site, created by Australian Sean Banville of "Breaking News English" (reviewed here), has high interest, "easier" news for students to read and many teaching materials to go with them. Though the look of the site is cluttered with advertising and plain text, the content is worthwhile. Developed for ESL/ELL students and teachers, the site would also work well in a subject area, learning support, or reading classroom. There are MANY articles "ready to go," including mp3 audio files to listen to the articles. At the time of this review there were 200+ new additions! Each article includes several types of activities such as "online gap fill" (a Cloze reading activity), vocabulary flashcards, and hangman, and matching. A full script is available in pdf form. There is also an online, interactive quiz for students. The articles, and a lot more activities, can be downloaded and printed, too.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): diseases (70), listening (70), news (236)

In the Classroom

The articles are short and interesting, a perfect match for non-fiction reading comprehension. With so many different activities to choose from, it will be easy for the classroom teacher to differentiate. There is an mp3 audio version of each article so students can listen as they read. Assign small groups of students to present the news each week, using the interactive whiteboard to show others the country and city from which the article originated. Make the newscasting experience even more real by having students read scripts of these news stories or their own original stories using a Easyprompter, reviewed here. Students can then go to another news source such as 4 News Wall, reviewed here, to see what else is happening in the news. For a projecth and to enhance student learning, have the small groups create a "talking map" using a site such as Zeemaps, reviewed here. This site allows students to create audio recordings AND choose a location (where their article/story took place). What a fabulous way to share the article with the rest of the class!

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Just Free Books - justfreebooks.info

Grades
2 to 12
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This site is an aggregator for most of the known digital libraries including Gutenberg, Google Books, Wikibooks, and archive.org. Entering search terms like "children's books," for...more
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This site is an aggregator for most of the known digital libraries including Gutenberg, Google Books, Wikibooks, and archive.org. Entering search terms like "children's books," for example, leads to a list of links that offer free online reads. Other features include books in other formats including those that upload to many different players including PDF, TXT, MS Reader, MS Word and ODT, RTF, Palm Reader eBooks, Html, Epub, Kindle, Mobipocket, Isilo, Audio books, Plucker, and more. Besides searching in "only English," you can also select Spanish, French, and/or Portuguese to search for books in those languages. In addition to the digital collection, there are also featured, donated books.

tag(s): book lists (121), literature (220)

In the Classroom

Offer this site to students who wish to use digital devices to read. Keep in mind that many of the selections are older, in the public domain due to the expiration of copyright. ESL/ELL and SPED students may benefit from being able to hear or see books in a different way. Use these texts as language to analyze or manipulate on your interactive whiteboard to teach reading comprehension skills, parts of speech, transition words, vocabulary study, and writing style. Allow students to copy/paste text into the whiteboard software so they can "work with words" from literary works instead of worksheets.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Signed Stories

Grades
K to 5
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The goal of Signed Stories is to increase the literacy of deaf children; however, it is a great resource for all children. After choosing a story, you will see the ...more
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The goal of Signed Stories is to increase the literacy of deaf children; however, it is a great resource for all children. After choosing a story, you will see the text, hear the story and see it in sign language. Almost 100 titles are available and can be searched by topic or by browsing all titles. Some stories offer more options than others. Many stories have pause and rewind buttons, so you can replay to see signs again.

In the Classroom

Use stories on the interactive whiteboard or projector to teach story elements - pause as the story is read to allow students to retell details to the stopping point then make predictions of what will happen next. Help students understand disabilities and adaptations to disabilities through watching the stories being told in sign language. This is also a great resource for students with deaf/hearing impaired parents or students/teachers trying to learn or practice sign language. In sign language classes, consider creating your own signed story videos for children's books and share them on a tool such as TeacherTube reviewed here.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Online Audio Stories - Abbey Rice

Grades
K to 3
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Bring classic children's stories to your classroom in an engaging and easy-to-use manner! This site contains many stories such as Jack in the Beanstalk, Rapunzel, The Princess and the...more
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Bring classic children's stories to your classroom in an engaging and easy-to-use manner! This site contains many stories such as Jack in the Beanstalk, Rapunzel, The Princess and the Pea and more in both audio and video format. Choose the story you want to read by genre, theme, author and other choices. Click to play and you are ready to listen and read along with the storyteller. One great feature of this site is that you can click on any word in the story and choose a language to see the word translated - a great addition for ESL students and families. All stories can also be downloaded in mp3 format, meaning that they can be played on most audio players and ipods. Note: This site may take long to load. Be patient.

tag(s): air (106), audio books (20), folktales (34)

In the Classroom

Download stories onto a mp3 player for students to listen to during reading time. Play the audio version of stories while following the written version on the interactive whiteboard. Use the stories during a fairy tale unit to compare and contrast characters. Share this link on your class web page for families to enjoy at home. These stories are worth playing over and over. Be sure to provide this link on your class website for students to explore both in and out of the classroom.

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Professor Sneeze - Marie, Muriel, and Myriam Dielemans

Grades
K to 6
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Scroll down the page to find Mr. Sneeze and his fact and advice about climate change. Follow animals through short stories, fiction, and cute drawings to learn about climate change....more
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Scroll down the page to find Mr. Sneeze and his fact and advice about climate change. Follow animals through short stories, fiction, and cute drawings to learn about climate change. Learn about the changes which have been fact checked, and bring the phenomena to young students clearly and simply. Click on one of three age groups to view a variety of activities: Download the story, read the story, use suggested related activities, and learn to draw the animals in the stories. Many also have the option of printing printable versions of the stories. Goals and educational notes are provided as well. Note: the audio versions of the stories do not always work, depending on your browser and platform (Win/Mac). Pretest or use the versions with text on screen.

tag(s): arctic (40), climate (77), climate change (72), environment (218), polar (12)

In the Classroom

Use these stories to learn about climate change as well as the organisms that live in colder regions affected by climate change. Read aloud to students or allow students to read together in small groups. Create story organizers to keep track of the basics of the story. Determine characteristics of the principal character in the story. Discuss what students know about that type of animal and discuss other information or stories that allow students the opportunity to understand more about the animal. Use some of the suggested activities to create ice floes or make paper ice crystals. Discuss other animals that may be affected and create conventional or multimedia posters that enlighten and inform others. Modify learning and have your students create an interactive online poster using Canva, reviewed here. Use this story to help children find a voice and create their own stories or poems. Transform learning and share the stories by creating an online book using a site such as Bookemon, reviewed here.

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