In most cases, you don’t just wave a magic wand and baby loves books. It takes exposure, repetition, routine, and creating a positive experience. So please don’t give up if baby cries and fusses when you begin reading books with them. Keep exposing baby to books each day. It works really well to incorporate reading into daily routines such as before nap/bed times. Routines allow baby to be relaxed. There are also a few tricks of the trade to help gain and keep babies interest in reading books. Give these a try……
Read Aloud Tips:
- Choose a baby friendly book-look for simple pictures that aren’t too busy, babies like high contrast illustrations with bright and bold colors, rhyming words and repeated phrases are good also
- Hold your baby close and give them lots of snuggles and cuddles while reading
- Read in a quiet, comfy area
- Leave words out-you don’t have to read every word, keep it short and sweet, especially for newbies!
- Make up words to describe the pictures-especially if there’s a lot of print, keep sentences short
- End at any page-if baby gets cranky, make up a quick ending and be sure to say “The End” so baby gets the gist of closure
- Stop reading a book if baby doesn’t seem to enjoy it, try another book or another time
- Point to pictures as you name them
- Change your voice throughout the book-make animal and transportation sounds, vary your intonation, lengthen vowels (biiiiiig, meeeeoooow)
- Read several short, quick books instead of one long one
- Perform repeated readings of the same book-this allows baby to focus and learn new concepts each time you read
- Allow baby to explore, touch, hold, and mouth books-bath books are great for baby to play with
- Be positive and encourage baby!