Age of child:
Birth through 18 months (for this purpose)
Description of the activity:
Books are so important to aid in the development and build language. If books are chosen intentionally and displayed and handled properly very young infants will enjoy them and spend an amazing amount of time enjoying them with caregivers, other adults, other children, and even alone by themselves. If a caregiver demonstrates a love for books by reading to themselves and enjoying reading to the infant, they will increase the love for books for the infant forever.
Books for infants: Since infants’ vision is not completely clear begin with black and white books, wordless books with simple familiar pictures, then simple word books with beautiful pictures, and move onto rhyming books, around 1-year-old, lift-the-flap books are great too. Books should be durable and chew-proof. Stimulate the infant’s senses by choosing tactile books with different textures.
How to introduce this activity:
Keep books 8-10 inches away because she can’t fully focus on images further or closer than that until her visual system is fully developed after several months. Holding the infant during reading gives them the message that reading is a comfortable activity that feels loving. It is important to read the same book over and over, so they can process the information more and more each time.
- To aid in the development of concentration and independence
- To aid in the development of language and reading
- To be introduced to new vocabulary, sounds and phrases we may not always use in everyday language
- To aid in listening as part of communication and understanding
- To aid in the development of the love of reading
What to avoid:
- Animals that wear clothes or do things that animals don’t do
- To many books out at once or a few books but not intentionally chosen