For lots of families, bringing your first child into the world is a time of happy, if stressful, change. And, when you are expecting, there are so many things to think about and prepare for that it can be overwhelming. However, for you expectant book worms out there, I’ve got an item to add to your baby checklist that will be a welcome pleasure… adding books to your baby layette.
When things get hectic in your pre-baby planning world, why not indulge yourself with a warm cup of cocoa, and a little shopping for some books for your little reader-to-be? It’s fun to revisit your own beloved childhood books like A.A. Milne’s “Winnie-The-Pooh” and to imagine sharing those favorites with your own baby as you count down the days to your new arrival.
But, do babies really need books?
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The easy answer is, of course. The folks over at KidsHealth.org have a great way of thinking about it. They said, “You may wonder about the benefits of reading to your baby. An infant won’t understand everything you’re doing or why. But you wouldn’t wait until your child could understand what you were saying before you started speaking to him or her, right? And you wouldn’t bypass lullabies until your baby could carry a tune or wait until he or she could shake a rattle before you offered any toys. Reading aloud to your baby is a wonderful shared activity you can continue for years to come — and it’s an important form of stimulation.”
In fact, even if the baby has no idea what the words you say mean, reading to your baby has countless benefits… hearing new words promotes language development, hearing you talk while snuggling with a book helps you bond to your baby, and it even gives your baby an added advantage in learning to read. There are also plenty of parents out there who read to their babies while in utero.
Plus, if you’ve already had your first child, and say you’ve got all of your baby essentials taken care of, but haven’t had a baby shower yet, requesting a “stock baby’s library” shower is a really fun idea. Planning a baby book shower to get everyone excited about the new baby gives you another headstart on reading to the baby once he or she arrives.Not sure what kind of books are appropriate for infants? There’s an amazing selection of books for babies to two-year-olds, and starting with board books is a best bet. Watch for great reads like “Guess How Much I Love You” and “Don’t Let The Pigeon Drive the Bus!”