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Regardless of what stage your child is at, an unborn child, newborn, or toddler, reading to your little one at each and every stage has many advantages. From bonding with your infant to helping hit those important milestones such as speech , the important of reading can never be overstated.
Why It’s Important to Read to Your Unborn Child
Studies show that at around 18 weeks, your unborn child starts to hear sound, and by week 26, they can hear voices and even respond to noise. Its at this stage that they can start to make out their mother’s voice: not necessarily the words but definitely recognize her voice.
Its at this stage that playing them music, talking to them and reading to them can become very important. With them now being able to make out voices, this can become a great way for parents and those people who hope to play a very involved role in the life of that child to begin to connect and bond.
You could pick up your favorite novel, read them this blog or even the dictionary: it doesn’t matter what you chose, the important thing is them hearing your voice.
With my son, it got to a point that he would move or kick when hearing my voice read to him. And if you’re curious, I read comic books to him. And when he was born, whenever I spoke, he would respond to the sound of my voice, especially when crying.
Why It’s Important to Read to Your Newborn
This section is really just a recap of what I’m certain many of already know: reading to our newborns helps develop their communication skills (listening, language, vocabulary) and strengthens your bond with them and theirs with you. And as they get older, reading introduces them to colors, shapes, numbers and immerses them in the world around them.
But Reading to Your Little One Can be Boring!
Those days when my unborn would kick upon hearing my voice were amazing, although they were few and far apart. But admittedly, there were also those days when reading to him was boring. You’re reading to someone you can’t see. Someone who might be fast asleep. And even if they are awake, they have no idea what you’re saying.
However, once he was born, it got a little more exciting. Watching him trying figure out how those sounds were coming out of my mouth was beyond adorable, and then seeing him gaze at the pages as if he was following along was even cuter.
But I still felt something was off. It wasn’t him, it wasn’t me. It was what I was reading, it was boring.
Discovering Little Golden Books
I tried different books and series, but still couldn’t find something that thrilled me when opening it up to read to him. It’s a weird thing to say, but I wanted to find books that I would enjoy WITH my child. Books that not only were engaging to him but engaging to me as well. This was important to me because the more I was into what I was reading–my delivery, animation, energy–the more I felt my son would be into it too.
So I hopped onto Amazon and typed “Black Panther children’s book” and there they were, two of them: Black Panther: Warriors of Wakanda and Black Panther. Then I decided to search for all my other pop-culture tastes and obsessions, and boom, they there were: Star Wars, Star Trek, Moana, Coco and more.
Although the Little Golden Books brand has been around for a long time, they’ve found ways to tap into new audiences and stay relevant by tapping into contemporary pop culture: from Star Wars to Star Trek, Marvel comics to Disney, their diversity of offerings have allowed me stuff I can read to my child fondly because it takes me back to my own childhood and indulges my own interests.
Moreover, these titles have not only helped with his developmental milestones and our bonding, but have also given us something with can grow together with. Because it’s Star Trek, Marvel, Disney etc., as he gets older, we can go from children’s books to cartoons, cartoons to comic books, comic books to movies enjoying the same characters and stories we bonded over when he was an infant.
Final Score 4.5/5
We Still Do Read Other Books To Him
We still do read other books to him: Pete the Cat, First 101 Words and others. There is a place for all of them on his bookshelf, especially with both myself and his mother gravitating towards different titles. But if you can, as you build that collection of books you hope to read to your little one, find a series or titles you love and enjoy. And if I had to recommend a catalog of children’s books to consider when searching, it would be the Little Golden Books.
This New Dad,
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