[RFHF] Ages, stages, and books: A book sharing guide

Katie Anderson katie.anderson at state.or.us
Thu Jul 21 16:19:39 PDT 2011

Hi!  I just learned of this great new chart by Saroj Ghoting<http://www.earlylit.net/index.shtml> which lists by age (in months, starting 0-3 months!) what babies can do, characteristics of books for babies that age, and tips for sharing books with babies that age.  Here is the link: http://www.earlylit.net/resources/ala2011crisscross/stagesandbks2.pdf .

This is an especially effective chart for newborns to 1 year olds because it breaks stages into 3 month age ranges for these really little ones who are developing so fast.  However, the chart goes up to 5 year olds too!

Here is an example:

Age in Months

What They Do


Sharing Books

Birth – 3 months

 Raise their heads briefly, turn head side to side

 Look around; look back and forth between 2 objects

 By 2 or 3 months some control over head when they are supported

 Things look fuzzy to them and they see best 8 – 12 inches from their eyes

 Prefer patterns to solid colors, sharp contrast in brightness between design and background

 Black or bright bold color on white background more interest than design in lighter color on white background

 Cannot manipulate objects voluntarily with their hands but will grasp tightly a finger or other object placed in their hands—grasping reflex

 By about 3 months they bring the object to their mouths to suck

 They pay attention when you speak to them, especially if it is ―parentese‖ style.

 Cry, coo with vowel sounds coming first

 Turn head toward speaker

 Focus on faces

 Simple large pictures or designs set against a contrasting background

 Designed to stand up

 Stiff cardboard books

 Zig-zag pages

 Black on White or White on Black by Tana Hoban

 Books of individual nursery rhymes

 Responding to baby is of utmost importance

 Display books with bright bold illustrations along side the crib

 If baby likes to lie on the floor, book can be opened wide and placed on the floor

 Allow baby to choose to focus on the pictures or not so s/he won’t become overstimulated

 Say nursery rhymes

 Sing songs

Katie Anderson, Library Development Services
* Youth Services Consultant * Oregon Center for the Book Coordinator *
Oregon State Library, 250 Winter St. NE, Salem, OR 97301
katie.anderson at state.or.us<mailto:katie.anderson at state.or.us>, 503-378-2528

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