Audiobooks, used by many adults on the go, offer benefits to the developing minds of kids as well. Audiobooks help kids by introducing them to books above their reading level, teaching them to listen critically, improve interpretive reading, highlight the humor in books, introduce new vocabulary, genres, locations, and help sidestep unfamiliar dialects or accents like Old English. Not only that, but audiobooks teach children how to enjoy and appreciate stories that come alive in a way they might not yet be able to access. If audiobooks is something that you were thinking of introducing to your kids, keep reading.
Free Audiobook Resources
Below are 2 sites you can visit to access audiobooks for free, which is a perfect option if you want to see if audiobooks are right for your young listeners:
LoyalBooks is where you will find audiobooks in a plethora of genres and languages. They have a Children’s Section, Top 100 section and a whole lot more. This site also has a Google search feature at the top to find the book you want, even download them in iTunes or MP3 formats. Primarily made up of classic literature, you can find links to the books and the authors when you are done, for more information. One of the classics you can find there is:
ThoughtAudio is a nice audiobook website that offers a collection primarily of classical works. Listening to them online, downloading them in segments for enjoyment later, or even the downloading of a PDF written text gives you myriad options for your kids to learn.
Paid Audiobooks (and Well Worth It)
Now that we’ve covered the free resources, we wanted to also cover a few options where you can purchase audiobooks. Why buy them when you can get some for free? There are a few reasons:
- You get access to brand new audiobooks as soon as they are released. So if you or your kids are in the middle of a series, then you’ll get access to the latest book in that series as soon as it comes out.
- Often, free sites only provide an abridged version of the books. Not always, but often.
- Paid sites generally offer a wider variety of audiobooks.
1. Amazon’s Audible
Amazon’s Audible has over 15,000 audiobooks that you can buy, rent, stream, listen to offline, whenever you want. With this service you can try it for thirty days for free, and afterward pay a minimal monthly fee in exchange for access to said library and renting of up to ten books at a time. Many classics are free, included in the monthly membership fee while you also get one free book every month. For newer books you get a discount from the retail price and the ability to listen on the go with nearly any device. They also have an extensive collection of audiobooks geared towards kids. For example:
Right now, if you buy a Fire Kids Edition Tablet, your kids will get a 1-year subscription to Amazon’s FreeTime Unlimited service, which gives them access to over 10 thousand books, movies and more.
OverDrive has a library with over 30,000 books that you can check out online and listen to right from your tablet or phone. Using their virtual library card and audiobook app, you can listen to books offline, burn them to a CD, or copy them to another portable media option.
Access to free content is definitely more appealing but the availability of books you are looking for might be a bit limited. A lot of the free sites don’t have rights to certain books and sometimes they only offer abridged versions of the more recent books or more likely, they’ll never offer the newer books. With paid subscriptions, you get access to the latest and greatest in audiobooks, and they are full-length versions. With better libraries at your disposal (and many better options), the paid options might be the way to go. It really comes down to how many books your kids end up listening to. Some kids get hooked right away, while others prefer to do something else with their time.
If you have experience with one of the resources we mentioned above, whether good or bad, please let us know using the comment box below. Until next time!