Introducing Babies & Toddlers to Books

Talk or Sing About the Pictures: You don’t have to read the words to tell a story. Try “reading” the pictures in a book for your child sometime.

Make It Personal: Talk about your own family, pets, or community when you’re reading about others in a story.

Let Children Turn the Pages: Babies can’t turn pages on their own just yet, but an 18-month-old will want to give it a try, and a 3-year-old can certainly do it alone. Remember, it’s OK to skip pages.

Show Children the Words: Run your finger along the words as you read them, from left to right.

Make the Story Come Alive: Create voices for the story characters and use your body to tell the story.

Ask Questions About the Story, and Let Children Ask Questions Too: Use the story to have a back-and-forth conversation with your child. Talk about familiar activities and objects you see in the illustrations or read about in the story.

Make Books a Part of Your Daily Routine: The more books are part of children’s everyday lives, the more likely they will be interested in it and see reading as enjoyable.

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