The benefits of introducing books to your child are vast. The earlier the better...
When Can Baby Hear Me?
There seems to be a range of opinion as to when an unborn child can hear sounds from inside the womb. It varies from source to source; appearing to range from as early as 20 weeks to 36 weeks as the first time baby can hear. What does seem unanimous however are the benefits of reading to your bump...
When I was pregnant with OJ; I felt a little silly at first as I read "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" by Eric Carle to my bump, but when he responded by moving about to my voice it was an absolutely incredible moment.
Reading/talking to your unborn child aids in the bonding process, helps baby to recognise; and be soothed by your voice and introduces language pattern and rhythm.
Read To Your Baby...
You may think at this stage, little 'un is only interested in doing the expected baby things such as eating, sleeping and, er, filling ones' nappy, but in fact, by reading to your baby you are providing examples of language for baby to follow and reinforcing them... Think of baby as a little sponge who is 'absorbing' the world around them. Here are more reasons why you should read/talk aloud to your baby:
It encourages memory, listening and vocabulary skills
Helps to introduce baby to the world around them
Develops attention span
Introduces the world through pictures
Encourages bond between baby and parents/carers
Encourages child to develop speech
Develops a love of reading which will help long term in education
And keep it going...
Building story time into a child's routine can give comfort, reassurance and simply, moments of joy by spending time together.