Reading to your baby has remarkable benefits that last throughout their lives. From his first day of life your baby can begin reaping the rewards of regular reading time. In fact, some parents begin reading to their babies even before they’re born.
While it may not seem like it, your infant really does like being read to. She can focus on the faces and colors of the pictures in the books, and, she loves hearing your voice as you read to her.
It doesn’t matter what you read. You could read her everything from actual baby books, to the ingredients on the label of the soup you’re looking at in the store, to pretty much anything else that you’re reading that moment. You may feel like you’re talking to yourself but she’s taking in the words you’re saying, how your mouth moves, your inflection, the volume of your voice, and so much more.
Reading to Your Baby and Brain Development
Reading to your baby is also aiding in her brain development. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) says,
“Reading regularly with young children stimulates optimal patterns of brain development and strengthens parent-child relationships at a critical time in child development, which, in turn, builds language, literacy, and social-emotional skills that last a lifetime.”
The AAP feels reading to infants is so important that in 2014 they encouraged pediatricians to begin talking about it with parents during well baby visits. They made this recommendation because research has shown that children who are read to from infancy have a larger vocabulary than their peers. This head start benefits children throughout their academic careers and well into their professional lives. According to the AAP
“Children who are read to during infancy and preschool years have better language skills when they start school and are more interested in reading, according to research highlighted in the statement. In addition, parents who spend time reading to their children create nurturing relationships, which is important for a child’s cognitive, language and social-emotional development.”
As you can see, so much can be gained for your child simply by reading to them. If you haven’t begun reading to your baby yet, it’s never too late to make it a regular part of your day. They’ll benefit from it whenever you begin.
Book Recommendations for Babies
To get you and your baby started on the road to a regular reading routine, here are a few compilations of book recommendations for infants and babies.
25 Best Baby Books of All Time
Your local library can also be a wonderful place to find books to read to your baby. The children’s area is usually very welcoming and meant for exploration. Many libraries even offer a weekly story hour for babies and young children. This can be another way to foster a love of reading in your child, and meet other area moms and dads while you’re at it.
Most infants aren’t that picky though. Whatever you read to your baby, she’ll benefit each and every time. So get started reading to your baby today.
Featured image courtesy of The Reading Womb.
Read our other articles for more ideas of things to do with your baby: