Babies & Books - from the beginning

Babies & Books

from the beginning


Why Read to Your Baby?

Newborn (birth to 6 months)

Older Baby (6 to 15 months)

Young Toddler (15 months to 2 years)

Older Toddler (2 to 3 years)

The Library: A Special Place for Baby and You

Suggested Books


Suggested Books for Babies (find them at your local library)

Start by reading simple rhymes and poems to your newborn:
Big Fat Hen by Keith Baker
The Baby's Lap Book by Kay Chorao
Bumpety Bump by Kathy Henderson
Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown
Here Comes Mother Goose edited by Iona Opie
Jan Ormerod's To Baby with Love by Jan Ormerod
Tomie DePaola's Mother Goose by Tomie DePaola

Young babies like to look at books with colorful, bold pictures:
Baby's Boat by Jeanne Titherington
Freight Train by Donald Crews
Mama Mama by Jean Marzollo
"More, More, More" Said the Baby by Vera Williams
Where Does the Brown Bear Go? by Nicki Weiss

Older babies enjoy holding cardboard books and turning the pages. These sturdy books stand up to rough play:
Animal Crackers by Jane Dyer
Barnyard Dance by Sandra Boynton
Color Zoo by Lois Ehlert
Max's Bath by Rosemary Wells
Spot Helps Out by Eric Hill
Ten, Nine, Eight by Molly Bang
Tickle, Tickle by Helen Oxenbury
Time for Bed by Mem Fox

Young toddlers like books with an easy-to-follow story that moves at a fast pace:
Benny Bakes a Cake by Eve Rice
Clifford the Big Red Dog by Norman Bridwell
Have You Seen My Duckling? by Nancy Tafuri
I Went Walking by Sue Williams
If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura J. Numeroff
Sheep in a Jeep by Nancy Shaw
The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

Older toddlers can sit for longer stories. They are learning new concepts and they understand humor:
The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin
Come Along, Daisy by Jane Simmons
Corduroy by Dan Freeman
Curious George by H. A. Rey
Goldilocks and the Three Bears by Jan Brett
Silly Sally by Audrey Wood
Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

Babies and toddlers need books about real-life situations to prepare them for new experiences:
A Potty for Me by Karen Katz
All by Myself by Aliki
Airport by Bryon Barton
Baby's Book of the Body by Roger Priddy
First Day of School by Helen Oxenbury
Going to the Doctor by Anne Civardi
I Like Me, I Like You by Laurence Anholt
I'm Going to Grandma's by Mary Ann Hoberman

Suggestions for Parenting Titles

Baby Play & Learn by Penny Warner - games and activities for skill development in babies up to age three

Brain Games for Babies, Toddlers and Twos
by Jackie Silberg - interactive games to help babies become more aware of the world around them

The Read-Aloud Handbook
by Jim Trelease - lists of excellent books to read aloud, plus helpful suggestions
for how to enjoy reading with your child

Read to Me: Raising Kids Who Love to Read by Bernice E. Cullinan - practical guide to encourage your child's interest in books

Reading with Babies, Toddlers and Twos by Susan Straub and K.J. Dell'Antonia - advice for choosing, reading and loving books together

Caring for Your Baby and Young Child: Birth to Age 5 by the American Academy of Pediatrics - good information for childcare

Touchpoints Birth to 3: Your Child's Emotional and Behavioral Development by T. Berry Brazelton, M.D. - doctor talks about many issues faced by families with kids, birth through age 3

Baby Milestones by Dr. Carol Cooper - covers growth, important steps like walking and talking, choosing the best toys and other concerns of parents

Children who are not spoken to by adults will not learn to speak properly. Children who are not answered will stop asking questions. They will no longer be curious. And children who are not told stories and who are not read to will have few reasons for wanting to learn to read.

-- Adapted from Gail E. Haley's Caldecott Medal acceptance speech, 1971