TRC Read to Kids

Welcome to The Reading Connection’s blog, where you’ll find the best guidance on reading aloud to kids. Whether you are a TRC Read-Aloud volunteer, parent or student, the book themes and crafts ideas, child development guidelines and recommended websites will expand your world. For 25 years, The Reading Connection has worked to improve the lives of at-risk kids by linking the magic of reading to fun experiences that inspire a passion for learning. Visit our website at

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Report Feature: Detectives Read-Aloud

Learn about a great forensics Read-Aloud held at Sullivan House, where six- to ten-year-olds discovered the how-tos of investigation. The sample activities below will help you hold your own Detetives or CSI Read-Aloud.

  • Crime Lab Technician by John Townsend (nonfiction)
  • Mystery at the Club Sandwich by Doug Cushman (fiction)
  • The Robbery at the Diamond Dog Diner by Eileen Christelow (fiction)
The Read-Aloud included listening to Crime Lab Technician, followed by fingerprint matching! By comparing nine real fingerprints to a copy of a fingerprint found at the crime scene, the children tested their investigative skills. 

  • Compare bar codes by preparing 15 sample bar codes to bar codes drawn from a bag. The skills used to find matching bar codes are the same skills used to compare DNA by CSI!
  • Tape an animal to each child's back (the child should not know what animal it is), have the children pair off, and show them how asking questions of their partner about the mystery animal leads to correct identification. Making deductions from interviews is an important part of investigative work.
  • Prepare a tray containing 10 items and give the children about 10 seconds to look at the tray. Then take the tray away and ask the children how many items they remember. This demonstrates how difficult it is to remember detailed information and how hard it is to obtain details from an interview.

These activities are a great way to incorporate science, nonfiction, and thinking about careers into a Read-Aloud. Great job Team 3!

To receive credit for this online training, please fill out the form here.