You might think its crazy behaviour talking to your baby when they barely do anything but I think there is so much to be said for talking to them and playing them nursery rhymes when they are young. Our son Kylo is now around 20 months – He can say all his animal noises, animal names, all people names, 3 words in a row, towel, more, please and a huge array of words. He knows the actions to some nursery rhymes and he can pick up a book, turn the pages and point and say what each thing is in the book. I love to ask Kylo where the animals are and have him point them out and ask him a little question.
I think we should remember that babies are like sponges, they pick things up so quick, similar to how children do and also through repetition so if you repeat things like nursery rhymes with many words they pick up on things. If you look at a book with all pictures in and you point to things and say the word and read the same books to your child they will learn the words. The brain has a capacity for so many words and it helps children to know a variety of words. We love books and nursery rhymes as well as just simply talking to our toddler, even if your in the kitchen and say things like “Here is a spoon and fork”, “Do you want a yoghurt?” this kind of thing or telling them what each thing is in the supermarket or pointing to trees and leaves etc when you are out and about.
Some of our favourite nursery rhymes include
-Wheels on the bus
-Incy Wincy Spider
-Wise man and the foolish man
-Wind a bobbin up
-Little turtle and the bubble
-row row row your boat
I asked some other mums for their recommendations for toddler books and got the below responses. I do want to initially recommend simple books with a word and picture in for learning like the one pictures below.
Deborah from http://countryheartandhome.com recommends Jake and the FlumFlum Tree by Julia Donaldson. My girls would love finishing each sentence before me and the illustrations were lovely as always with her books!
Emma from https://dirtdiggersanddinosaurs.com recommends We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen. She says “It’s a simple and relatively short story that easily holds a toddlers attention. It encourages imagination and interaction with the repetitive wording that flows through the book and the illustrations are absolutely beautiful. And the best bit?… we have done so many follow on activities all from reading this book. It’s a firm favourite here.”
Beth from www.twinderelmo.co.uk says they recommend Dear Zoo (Rod Campbell)
With all the animals, my girls used to love making the sounds along with lifting the flaps. It really kept their attention as there was so much going on and it being interactive for them to join in
Anna from www.popitha.com recommends Good old fashioned favourites – Goldilocks and the Three Bears & the Three Little Pigs. She says “Firm favourites in our house and I love them because children can join in with retelling them. They learn the repetitive verses and it helps build up vocabulary.”
Anna from www.boorooandtiggertoo.com suggests reading Commotion In The Ocean by Giles Andreae. She says “This has been a family favourite since my eldest was a baby. Beautiful rhymes on each page plus they can find tiny starfish on each page as they get older. ”
Leigh from www.dadgeek.co.uk says they recommend as an author of children’s books, Julia Donaldson. Their favourite books are The Gruffalo and The Smartest Giant in Town because their kids loved these before they could walk.
Emma from http://themoneywhisperer.co.uk also recommends Toddle Waddle by Julia Donaldson. Even toddlers who aren’t yet speaking can pick up the sounds and rhymes in this great book. Hurry scurry, flip flop, toddle waddle….!
Rachel gives another vote for Julia’s books. She says “We love the Julia Donaldson books, hard to pick a favourite! My three do love Peace At Last by Jill Murphy ❤️ but my twins love any story if their big brother is reading”
Rachel is from Www.outandaboutmummy.com and blogs about parenting and the outdoor life, their jam packed weekends with the kids.