There's something exciting about listening to a story. Even a favorite book that you've read and re-read a hundred times can seem brand new when you listen to someone else read it out loud. The library has lots of books on tape, CD, and PlayAway (it's a little mp3 player), but did you know that you can also find some audio books online?
Storyline Online is a great place to look for read-aloud picture books. All of the books are read by actors who are part of the Screen Actor's Guild--a group for movie and television actors--and you can watch the whole story on your computer screen. There are illustrations, some animations, and a video of the actor as he or she reads the words.
Kiddie Records also has recordings of picture books from the 1940's and 1950's. One of my favorites is a recording of Ruth Krauss's book, The Carrot Seed.
The Carrot Seed (PreS-Gr. 2)
(The link will open a streaming audio file on your computer. Read by Norman Rose. Recorded by the Children's Record Guild.) A little boy finds a carrot seed and decides to plant it, even though his parents and his brother all say that it isn't going to grow. He waters it and pulls out weeds every day, waiting to see what will grow. The recording adds many lines to the story, but the music and sound effects are a lot of fun.