Boost your baby's brainpower
Research shows that reading aloud with children is the single most important thing you can do to prepare a child for reading and learning.
It’s never too early to start reading to your baby. Even newborns love to hear the rhythm and inflection of your voice. Hold your baby warm and snug in your lap while the two of you share a book. The more you read to your baby, the more his or her brain will grow.
Include short story times throughout your day. Read first thing in the morning, before nap, or include a story in your baby’s bedtime ritual. Read while you feed your baby. Take a book with you and read while waiting at the doctor's office or a restaurant.
Wondering what your baby should be doing at this age? Check out this great list of reading milestones for babies.
Read aloud tips
Older babies like to look for familiar objects and participate by touching, pointing, peeking and moving.
- Ask, “Where is the dog?” “Can you find the kitty?”
- Exclaim, “There is the blue car!” when your child points to the picture.
Have fun! Enthusiasm is infectious, make sure your child catches it! Use voices. Do sound effects. Make a fool of yourself. Your baby will love it!
Even a squirmy worm may be listening. Babies are grabby. Give them their own book to hold or something to gnaw on while you read.
Head to your local library
The Cedar Valley has many great libaries with books for even the youngest readers. Stop in at storytime or spend a morning exploring the library with your child.
- Benny Gambaiani Public Library (Shell Rock)
- Cedar Falls Public Library
- Denver Public Library
- Dike Public Library
- Elizabeth Rasmussen Martin Memorial Library (New Hartford)
- Fairbank Public Library
- Hawkins Memorial Library (La Porte City)
- Hudson Public Library
- Independence Public Library
- Janesville Public Library
- Jesup Public Library
- King Memorial Library (Grundy Center)
- Kothe Memorial Library (Parkersburg)
- Norma Anders Public Library (Dysart)
- Reinbeck Public Library
- Traer Public Library
- Waterloo Public Library
- Waverly Public Library
Books, books and more books
Nurture a reader. Make books an accessible part of your child's environment. Find a comfy spot where you won't be overly distracted. Create a home that encourages children to become lifelong readers.
You can find great books at local bookstores, thrift stores, garage sales and from friends and family who are ready to pass on books for young readers after their own chilren have grown.
Books for Babies
The Books for Babies program is an iniative of Cedar Valley United Way's Emerging Leaders and made possible through generous gifts from:
Cedar Valley United Way
Dillard's Department Store, Toyja Scott
In Memory of Luke Aronson
In Memory of Hudson Howard
Isle Casino Hotel Waterloo, Jill Mejia
If you are interested in helping the Books for Babies program grow, please contact Samantha Meier at 319.235.6211 ext. 20.