Do you want to set your child up for a lifetime of successful education? Do you wish you could raise one of those kids that thinks staying up late reading is being rebellious? Then you need to start them off early, I mean really early. Sitting with your baby, looking through a book, letting baby look at the colors and shapes, and reading to them develops a love of books because your child will start associating the lovely bonding they have with their caregiver to be with books as well.

Your Child’s Eye Development

For Babies

Reading with babies is extremely helpful in developing babies eyes and the visual parts of their brain. Seeing the different colors helps their brain learn and decipher between them. Having the book in front of them also helps them learn to point and grab different things that interest them. Reading the words aloud demonstrates the different sounds that baby can start copying, thus developing their ability to speak.

Until 4 months old, babies eyes see things the best if they are 8 to 10 inches away. A lot of visual development happens during this time. They can focus their eyes best starting at 8 weeks old though their eyes are still not very coordinated and may wander or cross some. Around 3 months, babies can start to follow moving objects with their eyes and reach for objects that are close enough for them to grab and even things farther away (baby can’t tell that yet, it’s ok).

At 5 months, babies start to develop depth perception eliminating the problem of grabbing for things that are too far away. This means that can see the world in 3D as well as tell how far away something is. At this age, they also start to be able to tell highly contrasted colors apart (not as well as adults, but we won’t hold that against them.) When baby starts crawling, their hand-eye coordination begins to develop more as well helping them be able to grab at things at point in a specific direction.

Between 9 and 12 months, baby’s hand-eye coordination is well developed so they will be able to point at certain things on a book page that attract their attention. They can also grab a specific book if they want to and even hold it themselves (maybe you’ll be able to get a cute picture of baby holding a book and looking like they’re reading it.)  Reading is important for helping babies eyes develop and grow an attachment and interest in books and their caregivers.

For Younger Children

By 2 years old, your child should have a well-developed depth perception and hand-eye coordination. This is the age when they’ll start recognizing shapes, colors, and characters. Reading at this age is a great way to strengthen their speaking, perception, understanding, and identification abilities. Reading is important for babies but this is the age where a love and interest of books begins developing. Children growing an interest in books at a young age is when the magic happens, both literally and figuratively. This is the point when you can start developing a child who loves to read and isn’t bored in school. This is also the age when all those books are new and magical to them.

For Older Children

At age 6, children need to have a fully developed eyesight as well as an understanding of what they are seeing. They also should have built up an interest in school and reading by now to grow as a student and as a learner. This is the point when learning will be taken into their own hands and having an interest in reading and learning from reading will be the most important and start a lifelong love of reading.

What To Do When Reading With Your Child

Get Ready

Try to See It Through Their Eyes

Reading a book
Reading

Get a Variety of Books to Choose From

Talk it Over

Ask Questions

Starting a child off early with a love of reading can work wonders to help that child grow to love reading and to read well. The more interest and attention a child has in reading, the more they will take away from reading for school and fun. If they’re enjoying reading, then schoolwork won’t feel like a task. They’ll do better in school and enjoy it more. Doesn’t that sound great? Having a child who actually likes school and likes learning!

Want some more tips on how to help your child learn right from the start? Check out my post below about how important stacking toys are for a young child’s development of fine motor skills.

best stacking toys
best stacking toys

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Instill a Love of Books in Your Kids Early
Instill a Love of Books in Your Kids Early