Saturday, November 10, 2012

High Contrast Books

The first books we read to our son when he came home were high contrast books.  At 3.5 months age they are his favorite books.  We were lucky enough to stumble upon three high contrast books at our local used bookstore.  For just $1 a piece we purchased  Fish and Canoe, Me and You, and Sock and Shoe.  All three books are published by Flying Frog and written by Frida Bing.  (There is a fourth book, Cluck and Moo, but sadly we couldn't find it at the used bookstore.)  All four of these books are sturdy board books.  These were the first books that our son showed any interest in. 

The idea behind high contrast books has more to do with the development of a baby's eyes than his reading abilities.  Babies are not born with 20/20 vision, it takes time to develop.  So, at first what they are most drawn to look at are bright colors, and high contrast items.  They make high contrast flash cards, but why use flash cards when you could read a book!  His interest in these books really started to pick up around 2 months of age.  As an adult you won't be all that impressed with the books, but just watch your baby stare at the pictures and you'll soon fall in love with them yourself!  The books feature simple illustrations in black and white with one or two words of text per page.  It is one of my favorite activities to put my son in my lap and read to him and talk about the pictures while he looks in wonder at the images in front of him.  In addition to exercising his developing eye sight, he is learning the joy of sitting in a parent's lap and being read to.  If you haven't given high contrast books a chance they are worth checking out for the truly young readers in your house.

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