When it comes to infants (6-12 month olds), reading should not be perceived as one-way communication but considered a very important tool for stimulation.
Life offers a multitude of joys but very few matches up to moments that spell pure bliss. Talking to an infant, for instance, is one of those moments. Although the minuscule creature may not be able to respond to you but the twinkle in his eyes would hold the power to light up not only the room but also make up for the electricity supply for the entire colony.
Why Read to My Baby?
Remember, today a reader, tomorrow a leader.” – Margaret Fuller. The benefits of reading to your baby are aplenty. Reading to the mind is what food is to the body. When it comes to infants, whose interaction and responding skills are limited, reading can become an important form of stimulation. Moreover, reading aloud to your baby can become an awesome “baby-mommy” activity.
“There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island,” said Walt Disney and he was damn right. Well, there is no right time to begin reading. Apart from singing lullabies and rhymes to your little honey bunch, which I’m sure you do, you could also read to your infant.
Between 4 and 6 months, your baby might actually begin to develop and show interest in books. Babies will try to grab and hold books, put it in their mouth and even suckle or chew on them. Hence it is important to invest in cloth books or books with a sturdy material. Make sure the book have huge pictures and bright colors accompanied with repetitive or rhyming text. Picture books with bare minimum texts can help the babies focus on faces, bright colors, and contrasting patterns.
Between 6 and 12 months, when your little one's brain is already making strong associations between pictures and real-life objects is most likely to respond to you while you read, try to grab the book and make sounds. By the time, they turn one, they should be able to flip pages (of course with some help from you).
Below we have listed some interesting and impactful books that you can begin with.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
The book is a personal favorite and a total stunner. What allures is the sheer simplicity of the book. It takes the reader on a journey of a newborn caterpillar who is on an eating spree.
What actually gives the baby a tactile experience is the cut away pages story of the book. The prime attraction is the hole that runs through the book as though a caterpillar has actually crawled through. Those wee little fingers will enjoy exploring the path and holes the caterpillar leaves behind as he munches his way through the yummy snacks.
Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed by Eileen Christelow
“Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed, one fell down and bumped his head…” is a very peppy and popular rhyme. This chirpy song is a fun way to introduce numbers to your kids. Complementing the already popular rhyme, this picture book features five little monkeys preparing for bedtime, as they wash, put on their pajamas, brush their teeth and then jump on the bed, falling off one-by-one. Kids fall head over heels in love with the repetition, rhyme scheme and the charades that go with the song.
Harold and the Purple Crayon
This picture book has some rib-tickling twists and turns as it takes you on a joyride with young Harold and his wonderful adventures. Your kid will be enticed with Harold’s World and his oversized Purple crayon who is his only companion then, Harold draws for himself a landscape that is full of beauty and adventure.
Green Eggs and Ham by Dr Suess
No list is ever complete without the Mention of Dr Suess who is the Baap of the reading world for children. Ranked among UK’s top favorite children authors, no child should ever grow up without reading them. The way he weaves words together or sets the rhyme scheme actually help kids develop basic language skills. This is one of the many books penned by Dr Suess.
When you read to your child you open their minds in ways you can never gauge and freewheel their imagination. Like Albert Einstein puts it across, “Imagination is the purview of life’s coming attractions.”