With March bringing us World Book Day, it’s the perfect time to start getting excited about books! You already know that reading to your little one is important, but do you know just how vital it is for their development? From bonding to literacy skills, language to imagination, books offer so much more than just bedtime stories. Let’s jump straight into the wonderful world of reading with your baby. 
How Reading Builds Learning Skills 
Improves Vocabulary and Language 
When you read to your baby, they hear new words, sounds and speech patterns that help build language skills. Pointing at pictures and saying the names of objects, animals and actions helps babies make connections between words and meanings. 
Bonding and Quality Time 
Curling up together with a book creates an opportunity for cuddling, laughing and engaging with your baby. Forming a habit from an early age establishes reading as an enjoyable activity you can share together as they grow. 
It Teaches Life Skills 
Books expose babies to numbers, shapes, colours and more. Listening to stories helps them understand how language is used to share ideas and information. Turning pages, following a sequence of events and making connections between pictures and words are all skills that translate to other areas of life. 
How To Read With Your Baby 
Cuddling up with your baby is a special time for bonding and learning. Sit down together regularly with some of their favourite books and make the experience as interactive and fun as you can. 
Don't force your baby to sit still for long periods. Start with just a few minutes at a time and build up as their attention span grows. Laugh, smile and use silly voices to bring the story to life. Your enthusiasm will rub off on your little one! Here are some more tips on getting the most out of your storytime sessions… 
Board books with lots of pictures are perfect for little hands. Let your baby turn pages, point at images and babble along with you. For cloth or plush books, show them that it's OK to grasp, squeeze and chew (as long as the book is sturdy and non-toxic!) 
As your baby gets older, ask them questions about the story and pictures to help build comprehension. Say, “Do you see the red ball?” or “Can you find the little cat?” Repeat words and point out objects to help them associate words and images. 
When reading about animals, vehicles or sounds, bring the story to life with fun noises. Your baby will love roaring like a lion, mooing like a cow or honking like a truck! Sound effects spark the imagination and stimulate language development. 
Reading with your baby has so many benefits that extend far beyond storytime. The gifts of literacy, learning and special moments together are ones that will last a lifetime. Don’t forget if you’re looking for story recommendations, we post monthly new book releases across our social platforms. Follow us there to keep up with more! 
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