Sharing books:

  • Helps create a special bond between parents and children.
  • Introduces children to art through the illustrations.
  • Enhances children's listening skills.
  • Introduces children to a wide variety of experiences.
  • Helps prepare children for learning to read.
  • Improves and enriches the quality of children's lives.
  • Provides fun and enjoyment for children and adults.
source: Association for Library Services to Children publications "How to Raise a Reader" and "Born to Read"

When to share books:

  • Begin when your child is born.
  • Make a special time each day, such as nap time, bedtime, or after meals.
  • Share books when you and your child are in a relaxed mood.
  • Limit sharing time if your child becomes fussy or restless.
  • Take advantage of "waiting" times to share books--on trips, at the doctor's office, in line at the grocery store.
  • Soothe a child who is sick or cranky.
source: Association for Library Services to Children publications "How to Raise a Reader" and "Born to Read"

How to share books:

  • Find a comfortable place to sit (a rocking chair is wonderful).
  • Recite or sing rhymes from your favorite books.
  • Turn off other distractions--television, radio, or stereo.
  • Hold the book so your child can see the pages clearly.
  • Involve your child by having him or her point out objects.
  • Talk about the pictures, or repeat common words.
  • Read with expression.
  • Vary the pace of your reading--slow or fast.
  • Find other titles by the authors and illustrators included in this list.
  • Have your child select books to read.
  • Reread your child's favorite books whenever asked.
source: Association for Library Services to Children publication "Born to Read"

Types of books to be shared with infants include:

  • Books with rhyme, rhythm, and repetition
  • Books with pictures of other babies
  • Informational books
  • Poetry books
  • Books with textures or touch and feel books
  • Mother Goose and nursery rhyme books
  • Concept books - ABC's, Colors, Shapes, Numbers, etc.
  • Folktales
  • Books that feature familiar items or events in baby's world
  • Books that feature sounds
  • Books babies can manipulate, such as lift the flap books or books with holes (12 - 18 months)
  • Books of different sizes and shapes (18-30 months)
  • Books with "parent appeal"
source: Books and Babies.