Reading to Babies!

FREE IMITATION SKILLS CHECKLIST

reading to babies

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Reading to babies is more about the INTERACTION you are having with the baby than the actual baby books themselves!

Tips for Parents when Reading Baby Books to Babies!

Reading to Babies Tip 1

​Reading babies a variety of baby books can easily be part of your DAILY routine – just like baths and feeding are part of your daily routine, make reading a set part of your schedule.

  • Have a bath baby book in the bath
  • Have baby books hooked on the pram – show it to them while you are waiting around (These interactve stroller books are SO much better than electronics! Research is recommending NOT to expose babies to screen time.
  • Have baby books in different spots around the house e.g. next to cot, next to the lounge. Cloth books and solid board books allows babies to interact with the books without concerns that they will damage the books.
  • Set up your routine to include BOOK reading e.g., after a feed when the baby is not sleeping but content, you can look at a page or two in a book; snuggle time after a bath or one look at the bath book then "out the bath" to use as a trigger for transitioning in and out of the bath; look at a baby book before the nap-time/ bedtime feed time. Tie a pram book to the high chair to keep them entertained while you finish up getting their snack ready.
  • Each family’s routine is different but ensure a book reading time is SCHEDULED into your routine. This helps to make sure baby storytelling becomes just what you do naturally. Early book reading can help babies learn to self soothe and feel comforted by routines. Setting up quiet book reading time to help babies to relax is a skill that can lay excellent foundations skills - skills the baby can employ as they get older.
reading to babies
Baby reading Bath Book

Spot the Dog Bath Book

Great example of fully submersible bath book. Splish-Splash!

Baby Book Recommended for Pram

A Fun Pram or Stroller Baby Book

Easy to tie onto the pram - hours of fun on the go!

Baby book cloth book

Cloth Baby Book Box Set

Bright and fun set of cloth books! Clear pictures and each book has a different topic.

Reading to Babies Tip 2

Keep the baby book reading time SHORT – 1-2 pages – don’t focus on “finishing” a book. It is natural for children to want to turn a page. This is OK. Point to match a sound or word to one or two items on a page and allow frequent turning while the baby is young.

reading to babies

Reading to Babies Tip 3

Don’t worry about saying each word on a page every time – repeat just the name of the item or action it does! Use a fun, sing-song voice to keep your baby focusing on your voice. This focus on your voice is the basis of learning the meaning of words and learning to talk. Books that encourage "exclamations" such as "Uh Oh", "oh No", "wee" are great for young babies from 6-10 months. These early exclamations are easier for babies to imitate then "real words".  Similarly books that encourage sounds and noise (eg beep-beep, moo, baa, La La la). Rhyming books make it easier for you to use a fun sing-song voice.

reading to babies
Baby book exclamations

A book full of Exclamations

A fun book to encourage you to read "exclamations" to your baby - great to boost imitation of speeech.

baby book moo baa la la la

Sandra Boynton Funny and Educational Book Set

Fun books that encourage imitation and exclamations.

Baby book Animal Noises

Books that encourage animal noises

Match the picture of the animal to the noise it makes - moo, neigh, woof-woof

Reading to Babies Tip 4

Expect and allow them to explore the baby books –Yes this means let them “taste” the book! We expect babies to bring the corners of the books to their mouths, bang on them, not let you or only want you to turn the pages. At this age, this is all OK. Choose durable books so you don’t have to worry about them tearing pages – baby board books, bath baby books, cloth books.

reading to babies

Reading to Babies Tip 5

Choose great baby books – Baby books ideally have BIG clear pictures (e.g., on picture to a page with not too much background detail), durable, different sensory books (ones with squeaky toys or noise buttons embedded into the pages, feeling books with different textures, include small light books they can start to reach for). A key goal with book reading is to show babies books and baby story telling is FUN. The more the babies can interact with the book the better.

reading to babies
Baby Book Sound Buttons

Noise books 

Noise books like these can encourage babies to copy the sounds they hear and match sounds to pictures.

baby book feel and touch

Touch and Feel Books

Touch and Feel book linking early sound play! A great combination for a baby book.

Baby book reading  magic

Mem Fox

Why reading is to babies and children is really important.

Reading to Babies Tip 6

Enjoy the special time together!

reading to babies

Focus On Objects eBook

Children's books

Children's Books: Focus On Objects


A children's book that talks at your child's speaking level and grows with them!

     Parents without the skills of adapting books to the language level of a specific child may loose the child's FOCUS and the child's opportunity to learn from the story. If a story is delivered at a language level that is too high or too low for the child to fully engage in or learn from story. The book has 4 levels that you can read to them OR Dr Sandra McMahon, Speech Pathologist's voice over can be provided with a push of a button. This means the children can listen over and over. They see the words grow into sentences and have the words read for them. Great for early reading skills too!

​     This eBook is actually spoken by Dr Sandra McMahon to coach you on how to change the words, the tone and the intonation of what you are reading. This eBook is delivered at 4 different levels: Children with No Words, Children with Some Words, Children with 2-3 Word Sentences & Children Developing Longer Sentences. The book grows with your child.

While the links to the books are Amazon affiliate links, they are primarily provided to show examples of recommended baby books.

Sandra McMahon
 

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