Learning to read and write doesn’t start in Kindergarten, it begins at birth! The first year of your baby’s life is a critical time for learning. Through positive interactions like talking with your baby about the things you see around you and cuddling up to read a book together, you are strengthening your baby’s early literacy skills.
Soft pillows, cozy blankets, and a warm comforter – sounds like the perfect sleeping environment, right? While these things may make a bed comfortable for you, they are unsafe and can even be deadly for your infant.
Placing your baby in a crib with soft blankets or covering him or her with a comforter can raise chances of suffocation and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) – one of the leading causes of infant death in the United States.
Last week, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), a group which represents 62,000 pediatricians across the country, released a policy statement recommending that pediatric providers promote early literacy development during visits starting from infancy.
The statement specifically recommended that during visits pediatricians should advise parents that reading aloud with young children can enhance parent-child relationships, guide parents toward reading activities to enjoy with their child, and provide developmentally appropriate books for high-risk, low-income children.
Dr. Pamela High, the lead author of the statement, said the recommendations aim to help parents “immunize their children against illiteracy.”
Involved fathers bring positive benefits to their children that no other person is as likely to bring,” – noted sociologist Dr. David Popenoe.
Fathers play a key role in raising healthy children. From birth, children who have an involved father are more likely to be emotionally secure, be confident in exploring their surroundings, and have better social connections with peers. They are also less likely to get in trouble at school and at home.
Children absorb most of their speech and language skills during the first three years of life. During this critical time, your words have the power to shape their world. Every word a child hears impacts how their brain develops and sets the foundation for future reading and literacy skills.
When a child is just placed in front of a TV, the part of their brain responsible for language development is not stimulated. That’s why First 5 California’s new campaign encourages parents to talk, read, and sing to their babies. These activities exercise a baby’s brain, helping it grow bigger and stronger.
Use these tips to create a world for your baby that is rich with words and sounds.