Christine French Cully: Hi! I am Christine French Cully, Editor-in-Chief of Highlights for Children, and today, I am with you to talk about how to read to your baby. Not at first thought you may think really? Why read to a baby? But actually it's never too early to start. For one, reading is brain foods for babies, helping them develop language skills and vocabulary, but almost if not more important reading together boost bonding power. Most babies love being cuddled in your arms as they listen to the sounds of the words as you read.
From the earliest years your baby will learn that reading together is enjoyable and special.
There are some tips for happy reading times with your baby. Reading time is cuddle time. Hold baby on your lap to read, this helps him associate reading with warm and cozy feelings.
And remember, short is sweet. Reading for only two or three minutes at a time is good as many babies can't focus much longer than that. Look for stories that are just a few pages long with colorful illustrations to keep baby engaged. Read in your normal voice. Babies love to hear your normal voice because it's familiar and comforting. Rhymes and repetition are winners. Babies love the way words sound, and pictures are important too. Sometimes talking about the pictures is all you need to do. When you point at and name pictures you help your baby understand that objects have names.
Reading is a sensory experience. Babies learn by touching and tasting. So pick reading material that encourages interaction, such as list of flat books and materials that can withstand exploration such as board books and Highlights Hello, a magazine built especially for babies. Follow these tips and you will have a happy baby who loves reading.