Building a Home Library In Anticipation of Baby’s Arrival
At six months pregnant, I have recently turned my attention towards building a small home library to greet our expectant little bundle of joy.
I’ve broken my list into two: board books and regular picture books. There’s a reason for this other than my obsessive compulsive ways.
Board books, and their indestructible formats, are the first aid in teaching children about books as objects; unbending pages make it easier for baby’s small clumsy fingers to grab onto, while the book’s solidity can withstand baby’s urges to chew.
Good board books: include brightly coloured illustrations; feature familiar objects, which babies will begin to recognize on the page; and present simple concepts like the alphabet or numbers.
With that in mind, I plan on investing in the following titles in board book format:
Before they learn to snatch and grab, babies remain a captive audience. Hence, this is an opportunity to share books that I love with my child, since the baby will have no choice but to sit in my lap for these longer stories! Below is a list of some of the picture books I’m planning on welcoming my baby home with:
There’s a wonderful sense of freedom that resonates throughout the pages of McLerran’s book. I find it touching that she uses her mother’s childhood recollections of an imaginary place as the seed of inspiration for this book.
Who doesn’t want to read about a gentle bull and his unexpected peaceful nature? I love the black and white illustrations in this classic Spanish title and find myself more and more taken by Ferdinand's shy quiet charm every time I read it.
Frederic by Leo Lionni
For me, this is a profound book that speaks to the importance of art in our society - a message that I’d like to seep into my own baby’s brain from as early an age as possible! It takes all kinds to make a society work, and Frederick is a lovely reminder of this fact.
What list is complete without a good bedtime book? This Caldecott winning title is one of my favourite reads for putting a baby to bed in part because it’s chock full of early literacy goodness: new vocabulary, rhyming text, phonological awareness etc.
I absolutely love the vivid illustrations in this book. Besides introducing baby to an iconic folk hero in Anansi the spider, I find the language and cadence of the text a real joy to read aloud.