The first time I spoke to a group of parents there were 6 or 7 new mothers with their babies. Luckily, I was a new mother myself or I would have been terrified. After I gave my (brief) talk about speech and language development I answered a few questions. I still remember one mother who really wanted her baby to do well in school when she grew up. The mother herself struggled to learn to read when she was young. At the time, some research said you could predict how well your child would read by the number of books in your house. I told the group I was pretty sure that even if you had books piled up to the ceiling, it wouldn’t make much of a difference unless you actually read them to your kids. I remember a lot of head nodding, so it must have struck a chord.
I thought about my own child and my own house. We did have some kind of reading material in almost every room so we must be on the right track. At some point I started a tradition of giving books at this time of the year and it’s stuck. It’s a challenge to choose just the right one for each person’s reading taste that won’t break the bank, but I do love sales tables. Some years it was comic books for all. Science fiction anyone? Horse stories for one, anything hockey for another. Now it’s anything vampire, anything science, anything graphic novel etc.
If you’d like some help choosing good books for children these are great websites for ideas: