Audible Audiobooks

As most English teachers know, a good number of students don’t read their books. The best way to help with this would be to teach children to love reading, but that type of approach is of little use in high school, when the students’ thoughts about reading are long-since set in stone.

But the problem might not be in the books, but in the actual act of reading. Perhaps some students don’t read because they read slowly or need to focus intently to comprehend the reading. Some students might not read simply because they don’t like sitting down and staring at paper. So why do they have to read at all?

Why not listen?

An image of a student looking bored while reading a book.
Does this book look exciting?

Perhaps a solution is to use the technology students seem to have an affinity for. Rather than read books, students could listen. Where the students’ lack of interest fails to read with emotion, the audio’s voices can make them hear the emotion of the words.

And when it comes to audiobooks, Audible is at the top of the market. With Audible, you can buy individual books or become a member. Members get a free book each month (or two, for a 50% price increase), and discounts on other books.

The Audible logo. (Their symbol, next to the words,

And once you’ve downloaded a book, you can listen to it wherever you go. Audible has apps for all the major smartphones, as well as for the major computer operating systems. From these, you can

For a school, the best option might be to pick up the two book per month membership and keep it until you have all the books you’ll need. A single account can support up to 3 wireless devices at a time (and possibly 4 more by adding the books to iPads via computers rather than direct downloads). Amazon household sharing can also be used to share books between accounts.

The biggest downside seems to be that, outside the free books granted with membership, book prices seem prohibitively high. But this can be avoided by having the books ready before the school year begins and saving the free books earned during the year for additional books.

To best implement these, I suggest starting the account on the 2-book per month plan, and getting books as the year progresses. After the last books of the year are recieved, cancel the subscription to avoid unnecessary expenses. Whenever a new book is needed, it can be bought directly, or a obtained by opening a new subscription.

Considering the cost of a book, this isn’t too unseasonable, and each book can be used by multiple students. Of course, many students do read, so not too many copies would be needed, but it would be a valuable step for those who don’t or can’t.

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