Have you always been a bookworm, and now you want to pass that interest on to your child? Or do you simply want to instill a healthy and rewarding habit in your little one?
Whatever your motivation, you can make reading a fun part of your baby’s life. Find out how with these five tips for raising a baby to be a bookworm.
1. Start at Any Time
It’s never too early—or too late—to hook your child on reading. In fact, you can read to your baby while they’re still in the womb. Additionally, one of the best reasons to read to your child is that it’s a meaningful bonding activity.
You can give your baby the strongest foundation with an early jump into this pastime. Board and cloth books are the best options for young toddlers and babies. While reading, ask your baby questions, use funny voices, and respond to their reactions.
2. Have a Routine
The next tip for raising a bookworm baby is to make reading a routine. One of the keys to building a habit is to make it an expected part of everyday life. With a baby, just a few minutes at a time does the trick.
Many parents use reading in their nightly routines to get their baby accustomed to a sleep schedule. Dimming the lights and reading in a soothing voice helps your baby relax and signals it’s time to get ready for sleep.
3. Involve a Lovey
One way to make reading more interactive for your little one is to involve a comfort object, often a lovey toy. Some books are packaged with toys so your child can bond with a character from the book. But even when that’s not the case, having the lovey join in on reading can create a richer socializing experience.
A stuffed animal benefits child development in many ways. From the moment your baby can make sounds, they can verbally communicate with their lovey; this helps your child develop their growing speaking and literacy skills.
4. Choose Short, Illustrated Books
Short books with colorful illustrations will help hold your baby’s attention. The fun artistry in illustrated board books and cloth books will help your baby care about the book.
Don’t worry about finishing a book in one sitting. Let your baby linger on pages they find particularly interesting. As they get older, they’ll become more interested in following the story.
5. Read Everywhere
Finally, the world is full of opportunities for your baby to read. For example, you can have fun little foam letters on your refrigerator for your baby to play with.
If you have decorative signs around your house, read them to your baby so they associate words with concrete meanings. And whether it’s mail, a recipe, or a pamphlet, reading aloud is an easy way to demonstrate the real-world applications of reading.