Books For Babes
Our first experiences have a lasting impression and influence how we respond and feel about all things in our lives. If we identify something we are afraid of, for instance, and trace it back to our earliest memory of it, there is a good chance we had a negative experience with it. That is why it is so important to make children’s early interactions with books positive.
Since we are such a large part of an infants’ environment, our state of mind, focus and general mood plays a large role in the overall experience of a baby or toddler. When you and your child are well rested, recently fed, not rushed and generally comfortable, it is a great time to share books and songs. I have fond memories of singing to my babies when they were already happy, while we were face to face, and enjoying the range of their responsive expressions with the variation of my voice. I soon discovered the power of this positive association, and quickly used it to manage the cranky diaper change time- it worked like a charm! Babies love your voice and naturally attract to singing, so using song to share books is a great way to bridge a positive feeling to a new experience. Some board books are created from a song and are meant to be sung, so this can be especially easy. Board books in general are great because they also give very young children opportunity for independent exploration, their durability withstands chewing, throwing and lack of fine motor control. Regular and positive interaction with books forms a foundation of comfort and familiarity for children, which provides benefits that will last their lifetime.
Rhonda Teramura, ECE and Mom of Three