This sturdy board book combines large, vivid pictures of adorable cats with funny, melodic text. With its enchanting pictures, this book is sure to become one of your baby’s favorite stories. There’s even a surprise for your baby at the end: a mirror on the last page will provide your baby with many moments of self-discovery.
Before, During and After Reading
Hold your baby close by comfortably positioning her in your lap. Beginning at birth, your baby will enjoy the closeness that comes with sharing a picture book.
Allow your baby to explore the book in any way she chooses. At first, your infant will delight in the book as an object. She may randomly bang and grab at the book or even try to mouth it. This is perfectly fine! The sturdy board book will hold up to whatever your baby has to offer!
As your baby grows and develops over the next several months, she’ll be more interested in focusing on the large, colorful pictures. Continuing to share a close adult-infant relationship around picture books helps to foster her developing engagement in books and reading.
Continue to maintain the closeness with your baby by holding her in your arms or lap. Hold the book 8 to 10 inches away from her so that she can begin to focus on the pictures.
Follow your baby’s lead. At first, she may only have interest in looking at the large, colorful pictures. By pointing out the pictures and describing the cats by color and facial features, you are adding to your baby’s awareness of language.
Try reading the words in a slow, exaggerated and melodic style. The sound of the rhyming text may be soothing to your infant. The text also offers many experiences with action words, which add to your baby’s vocabulary.
When you come to the last page that has a mirror on it, hold the book a little closer to your baby, about 6 to 7 inches away from her face, so that she can focus on her reflection. Again, follow your baby’s lead and allow her as much time for self-discovery as she pleases. Talk to your baby about what she sees and describe her facial features. You might say:
Who do you see? That’s baby’s name! You’re my beautiful baby girl! You have eyes, just like the cat’s! Your eyes are blue! Where’s your nose? There it is!
Play a game of Peek-A-Boo with a small plush cat or any other small plush animal you might have on hand. Peek-A-Boo is a game that helps your baby begin to understand that objects continue to exist even when they cannot be seen, heard or touched. At this stage in your baby’s development, she will delight in the surprise of the plush animal re-appearing into her view.
To begin, show your baby the plush toy. Say:
Where is Kitty?
Allow baby to spend a few moments exploring the object. You might gently rub her hand on the plush toy so that she can experience the texture of the soft fur.
Next, cover the plush toy with a cloth, or hide it behind you, and say:
Where did the kitty go?
At this stage in her development, the toy will simply be out of your baby’s sight. As she gets older, between six months and a year old, she will begin to pull the cloth off of the plush toy herself. However, very young infants will delight in the magically re-appearing plush toy as you uncover the object and bring it back into her sight! Watch as your baby begins to smile and coo throughout the game.
Explore more recommended children’s books for babies and infants from birth to five months of age. Or, find an easy at-home activity designed to build pre-reading skills in your baby.