Do you believe your baby is too young to be read to? Never! Research has shown that reading to your children as early as possible has a lasting impact on their brain development. According to a recent study by scientists at New York University, reading to babies can improve their vocabulary years later.

“What they’re learning when you read with them as infants still has an effect four years later when they’re about to begin elementary school,” said Dr. Carolyn Cates, the lead author of the research. Reading regularly with young kids stimulates parent-child relationships and enhances kids’ literacy, emotional, social (and more) skills for life.

To boost their desire to read, it’s very important that young children see their parents reading themselves. Children tend to copy everything their parents do, so if you want to raise a reader, be a reader. If they see you reading, your kids have much more chances to pick up this great habit. “If you never have a book in your hand, they won’t read. Kids will copy your behaviour so you’ve got to be reading yourself,” says author and illustrator of children’s books PJ Lynch.

“Simple books where there are pictures and a word to go along with the picture – these are what you start with,” explains Lynch. And since young readers love to pore over the details of images, to show them great illustrations is very important, as well as looking at books with them every day.

  An Interlude - William Sergeant Kendall - Google Art Project - WikimediaCommons

An Interlude – William Sergeant Kendall (Google Art Project / Wikimedia Commons)