Reading aloud aloud to your baby is a fun shared activity— plus it's important for your baby's
brain! It encourages your baby to look, point, touch and respond to questions. Your child can
develop their language skills through recognizing pictures, copying sounds and learning words.
You can start reading books to your baby as early as 3-6 months, or once they are able to focus
on items such as a toy or mirror. For very young babies, whose vision is developing, you can
start with high-contrast black and white books, like, “Look Look!” by Peter Linenthal or “I
Kissed the Baby!” by Mary Murphy.
By age 5 months, babies have good color vision and will enjoy bright and colorful pictures.
Board books are best for this age, as the thick, durable pages will withstand your baby handling
of books and learning to turn the pages themself. Find books that include rhythm, rhyme and
repetition, which helps children develop language. Any books by Sandra Boynton are a great
choice. My particular favorite is “Moo Baa La La La!” By age 12-18 months, you can introduce
lift-the flap books that allow your child to interact with the pages. Karen Katz has a wonderful
series of sturdy lift-the-flap books, all featuring adorable babies. Keep books short (around 1-2
lines of text per page), as your child is developing their attention skills. Choose books about
things that interest them, such as animals, cars and trucks or babies. You can find loads of
book recommendations online; two websites you might check out are readbrightly.com or
Try to read every day, perhaps before naptime and bedtime. Reading before bed gives you and
your baby a chance to cuddle and connect. It also sets a routine that is predictable and calming.
Other good times to read are when your child is fed, dry and alert. Babies love — and learn
from — repetition, so don't worry about reading the same books over and over. Your child will
develop their favorites and ask for them again and again!