Reading aloud to our children is so important. The problem is though, that most people will read aloud to their children when they are small, but once they are reading on their own, they stop. I know that's what i did with my first child. I started reading to her when she was a newborn. I had a stack of books ready before she was even born. I read, and read, and read to that child, until she started school and started reading on he own. Then I stopped. Until she started 3rd grade and I started homeschooling and heard so much about the importance of reading aloud. Even when children can read on their own, they can benefit from being read to. When they read on their own they can read books at their level, but when you read aloud you can read books at any level (of course making sure the subject matter is appropriate for their age.) It is so important for children not just to read the written word on their own, but also to hear it read to them.
My son, who is dyslexic loves books. He loves to read too but it is challenging for him. I read aloud to him all the time but I could read all day everyday and it wouldn't be enough. So we got him an inexpensive mP3 player, and loaded it up with audio books. Most of them were free from www.booksshouldbefree.com , www.gutenberg.org, and we even borrowed some from a "big city" library that we had a library card for. One difference that it is made for him besides giving him the ability to enjoy the story, is that his pronunciation is excellent. As I listen to him read aloud to me, I cannot believe how good it is! Why? Because he listens to books and hears the words pronounced. His vocabulary is also very good because he is not just limited to learning words from books that re at his level, he hears more difficult words from books that are above it.
I had a question from a new homeschool mom asking when she could start reading chapter books to her children who are 5 and 4 and what books I recommended. You can start reading chapter books to them at any time. Start with simple chapter books that have short chapters (10-15) and an interesting story that will hold their attention. Read one chapter everyday. I allow my children to draw or color quietly while I am reading aloud as it gives their hands something to do and helps the wiggle worms sit still.
There are so many good books you can read to your children! Some of our favorite chapter books for the younger ages include:
Little House Series by Laura Ingalls Wilder
Mr. Poppers Penguins by Richard Atwater
Charlotte's Web, Stuart Little, The Trumpet of the Swan by E.B. White
The Sword in the Tree and others by Clyde Robert Bulla
Nate the Great and others by Marjorie Sharmat
And so many more!!!
Here is a great book list of 1000 wonderful books for children, many of which would make great read louds.