Reading with your baby isn’t just for those moms who are already trying to plan college applications 18 years from now! (Although if you are one of those moms, you’re welcome here too!) Reading with your baby has a myriad of benefits, from increasing your connection to building vocabulary! Here are our best tips!
1. Let baby explore while you read.
It’s okay if your baby wants to pull the book into their mouth and suck on it. As they get older, they may want to turn pages, or smack the book, or push it up over their head with their feet. It’s okay to let them do that! (Maybe not the sucking bit. Invest in some sturdy Indestructibles books and cloth books if you’ve got a sucker.) Then gently disengage them and read another page.
2. Read books with complex language.
Babies’ brains are wired to absorb complete language. While it’s tempting to speak to them on the same level they’re able to produce, their understanding is typically leagues past their production. (For example, my toddler could follow a full-sentence instruction while he was still speaking in individual words.) Reading more complex things is actually more helpful for their brain than simplifying.
3. Point to things.
Especially if you’re reading something complex (like Goodnight Moon) instead of the single-word-per-page board books that abound. Connecting the sound to the picture to the pointing builds more connections in baby’s brain, and more connections means quicker understanding.
Enjoy this special time with your little one, and keep reading throughout their life.
Baby Discovery Box Team