Reading with your baby is one of the most important things you can do together! It enhances your child's language skills by being exposed to a variety of words and new vocabulary, it helps you to bond with your baby, and it builds a foundation of literacy skills that can influence his success as a reader. Today I'm sharing my best tips for reading with your baby along with 25 of my favorite books for the littlest learners. Any (or all) of these books would be a great addition to a home library or gift for someone expecting.
Read Aloud Tips with Babies
- Consider buying cloth books or "board" books. Books that you begin reading early in your child's life will undoubtedly become some of his favorites that you will be reading over and over, and they will need to last awhile. Plus, once he learns how to reach for books and handle them on his own, they will become his favorite snack.
- Select books that have bright, high contrast colors, or interesting photographs (especially of faces) – all of which babies enjoy looking at.
- Be sensitive to your baby’s cues. If he starts to cry, that may mean that he's not into story time, even though you are. If he looks away, it may be a cue that he's being overstimulated. Try to understand his needs and respond appropriately.
- Read and repeat! Children enjoy and learn through repetition and it helps boost memory, so don’t be afraid to read the same books over and over again.
- Choose books or poetry that have a nice rhythm, or rhyme – which help to bring a baby’s attention to the different sounds in words.
- Make reading fun and enjoyable by cuddling, making facial expressions, and varying your intonation. A love of reading is built on pleasurable experiences!
25 Great Books for Reading to Your Baby
Alice in Wonderland (BabyLit series) by Jennifer Adams
Baby Love (gift set) by Helen Oxenbury
Barnyard Banter by Denise Fleming
Big Red Barn by Margaret Wise Brown
Butterfly Kisses by Sandra Magsamen
Black on White by Tana Hoban
Brown Bear, Brown Bear by Bill Martin, Jr.
Counting Kisses by Karen Katz
Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell
Five Little Monkeys by Eileen Christelow
Freight Train by Donald Crews
Goodnight, Gorilla by Peggy Rathman
Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown
Huggy Kissy by Leslie Patricelli
Moo, Baa, La La La! by Sandra Boynton
My Baby & Me by Lynn Reiser
Peek-A-Moo by Marie Torres Cimarusti
Peek-a Who? by Nina Laden
Piggies by Don and Audrey Wood
Ten Little Fingers andTen Little Toes by Mem Fox
Ten, Nine, Eight by Molly Bang
The Everything Book by Denise Fleming
The Real Mother Goose by Blanche Fisher Wright
Where’s Spot? by Eric Hill
Check out a few of my other posts on reading with babies: