Birth to 2
Your baby starts communicating from the day they are born. When you talk, listen and respond to them you are helping them develop.
Birth to 3 months: Babies enjoy looking at faces, especially their parents. Singing gently to a baby helps them listen and learn and it’s never too soon to talk. Babies will react to your voice and you can soothe them by holding them gently, talking softly and singing to them. Singing helps babies to understand the rhythm of language. Make sure you look at your baby when you are talking to them. Your baby will take turns by moving, cooing or making facial expressions. Always try to respond in some way when your child is trying to communicate. Talk to your baby commenting on what they are doing when you feed, change and bath them.
By 6 months: Your baby will enjoy smiling at familiar faces. Getting face to face with babies helps them learn to listen and respond. Play repetitive games so that your baby will learn what happens next. They are intensely keen to engage with adults and enjoy and quiet times together when you talk, sing songs and look at books without noise in the background.
One Year: Babies communicate in more ways now. They will be starting to understand routines, simple words, tone of voice and activities. Sing songs and nursery rhymes, your baby will love those with actions. Using short sentences and repeating words while you play together and do everyday things will help your baby learn new words. Babies love to look at books, let them hold the book and look at what they’re interested in.
Eighteen months: This is a very exciting time most babies will be starting to talk. They may not be clear but they will be having a good go at trying to say a handful of words. Your child will enjoy choosing toys or books that interest them, so play and talk about these together. Use lots of repetition so your child hears the same words repeated in different sentences e.g. “where is the dog?” “The dog is brown.” “The dog has a bone.” They will enjoy songs and action rhymes.
2 Years: Toddlers are into everything and will be exploring the world around them much more actively. Their understanding of words and phrases grows really quickly during this time, they can understand much more than they can say and become frustrated when they are unable to make themselves understood. When looking at picture books can your child point out familiar objects when you ask “Where is the bird?” or “What is the boy doing?”
All Aboard by C Albaut Children will love twisting and turning this bright board book to follow the train on its journey, and will enjoy guessing who will get on and where the train will go next.
Baby’s Very First Touchy-Feely Book by S Baggot
A perfect book for newborn babies with images that are easy to focus on as well as touchy-feely patches to bring the pictures to life. This padded ‘soft touch’ hardback is perfect for sharing or can be propped up for babies to see.
Book Of Nursery Rhymes by Ladybird Books
A great first collection of nursery rhymes featuring all the classics. Each rhyme is brought to life through lively, colourful characters and a flap to lift on every page.
That’s Not My Truck by F Watt
This book is part of an award-winning series that combines bright, colourful illustrations with a variety of different textures to touch and feel on each page.
The Gingerbread Man by E Corke
One of a series of well-known tales retold in colourful picture book format with fun lift-up flaps that encourage prediction and discussion. Most stories can be purchased with or without a CD.
Love Stinks by D postgate
In this humorous rhyming story Smelly Bill is back, and he’s as smelly as ever – but now he’s in love! Can Bill win the affections of a perfectly preened pup without cleaning up his act?