Thursday, January 15, 2009

Why You Should Read to Your Baby - Part 2

  • It encourages language development.  Your baby will learn sentence structures that are more complex than what she will hear in spoken English.  She will hear words in books that she rarely hears in her daily life.  She will learn how to listen carefully, and how to follow an idea as it develops in a story.  She will look forward eagerly to that time when she herself will learn to read, because she will know what pleasure books can hold!
  • It helps to understand the surrounding world.  When you read books about a trip to the zoo or the arrival of a new baby, you are really helping to prepare your child for those experiences.  The more your child knows about the world around him, the more comfortable and secure he will feel.
  • It encourages imagination and creativity.  In every story, a problem is encountered and then solved.  Hearing stories will give your baby the background she will need for creative problem-solving in approaching the challenges of life.  And because books require that we experience something beyond what is physically present, hearing them will give her lots of practice at thinking in terms of "What if...?"
  • It makes parenting easier.  When you child starts loving books, reading can distract a fussy baby, an upset toddler or a stubborn two-year old.  When parent and child are on a "collision course," reading together can break bad moods and restore good feelings.  A read-aloud session calms a child at bedtime, and entertains a child waiting in the doctor's office or on a long car trip.  For that small space of time when you are reading to him, he will stay clean quiet and out of trouble!
Sponsored by "Baby Talk: Language, Literature & Love for Infants"

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