If you know me at all, you know how important I think it is to start reading to babies from the very beginning. It’s beneficial in many ways, like establishing a bedtime routine, building a longer attention span, and of course all the literacy and language benefits.
My friend Melissa Droegemueller was kind enough to write this great guest post to explain more!
Melissa Droegemueller is a former elementary school teacher currently homeschooling her two daughters, ages 8 and 5. She is passionate about empowering and equipping parents to be their child’s first and best teacher from birth. You can find her online at facebook.com/RollingPrairieReaders
I hope you enjoy the read. ?
5 Great Benefits of Reading to Babies
Welcoming a new baby is a sweet and exciting time for any family. There is a nursery to prepare, a car seat to purchase and install, and so many tiny little clothes to wash and fold. Many parents have a baby shower, and my go-to gift is a bundle of two wonderful books by Australian author, Mem Fox: Reading Magic (for the parents) and Where is the Green Sheep? (for the baby).
Our first daughter was born prematurely and spent her first few months in the NICU. I spent my days sitting by her side, alternatively poring over Reading Magic while she slept. I read aloud picture book after picture book during her awake hours so she could hear my voice. It was at that moment that our family culture was born. Books had always been a huge part of my life as a child and young adult, and now they are a huge part of our family as well.
Children need to hear 1,000 stories read aloud before they learn to read themselves. Click To Tweet
Here are five great benefits of reading to babies from birth:
- Reading together builds a bond unlike any other. You are giving your infant your undivided attention, eye contact, and physical touch when you read aloud.
- Reading together develops language skills. Your child hears the rhythmic sounds of your voice and is exposed to richer language, complex vocabulary, and more challenging words than are typically used in everyday conversations.
- Reading together develops listening skills. Good habits start early! And active listening is a skill we all need to have. Should you expect your child to sit still throughout every book you read? No, but make it a point to have special time with your little one on your lap each and every day, looking at pictures and talking about the text.
- Reading together assists with brain development. When you read aloud to your baby, his or her brain is building synapses (connections) between new concepts and those that are already mastered.
- Reading together creates a love for learning. The goal is lifelong learning. A genuine thirst for knowledge and a desire to acquire new information. Reading aloud is a huge part of a family culture built around books, along with regular trips to the library and seeing adults in the household regularly read for pleasure.
A big thank you to Melissa Droegemueller for writing this great post! Go check out more of what Melissa has to offer at facebook.com/RollingPrairieReaders
What are your favorite books to read to your babies?
Please leave us a comment below…We would love to hear what you think!