"There is a correlation between the richness of the reading environment in which readers live and the richness of their talk about what they've read.""In any group of children we find that if they begin by sharing their most obvious observations they soon accumulate a body of understanding that reveals the heart of a text and its meaning(s) for them all." Talking about a book helps a child find the heart of a story, make sense of a string of facts, and understand complicated ideas.
Aidan Chambers proposes an approach for discussing books so children learn to talk well about what they've read.
Indeed, not only talk well, but listen well. And not just about books, but about other things. For the "Tell me" approach ultimately helps children learn to clarify ideas for themselves and to communicate with others.
It is, in short, a basic step in applying knowledge and articulating meaning. Tell Me offers practical information about book talking in the classroom, explaining some of the processes and outlining the ground rules developed by teachers and others who work with children and books.
From their experience he has formulated a Framework, "a repertoire of questions that assist readers in speaking out their reading."Tell Me is companion to The Reading Environment.