I learnt the hard way that it’s never too early to start reading to your baby, with Teenager, we never tried to make it part of our bedtime routine until he was an older toddler despite my teacher sister buying him oodles of books when he was born. We tried desperately to engage him in some childhood classics but he only ever liked the George and Bartholomew series and the odd Thomas the Tank Engine, quickly developing into a reluctant reader and school reading became a chore.
It was so frustrating always having to encourage him, it took the fun out of it every time, in the end we settled for Roald Dahl story CD’s each night so at least he was listening to them. I’m now well aware of the importance of reading and listening to stories in the early years, how it impacts on speech and language development as well as literacy skills.
With that in mind we read to Baby R from the word go, starting with black and white books and quickly progressing to ‘That’s Not My….” ones which have quickly become his firm favourites. If he’s ever whingey or in need of distraction then out fail safe is getting out a book.
Fingers crossed we’ve set up good foundations for the future, stories are such a big part of childhood. My brother, sister and I are super nostalgic about some the books we grew up with. From Flower Fairies, My Naught Little Sister through to reading my Dad’s Guinness Book of Records over and over again, I even named my first cat after a favourite childhood book and with the hope of my brother being an accomplished author one day, it only seems fitting his nephews are book worms too.