Exciting results from recent studies show the powerful effects of reading to babies in utero. Groundbreaking evidence shows that babies absorb elements of language while in the womb, and that a rhythmic, repetitive story read regularly during the last trimester will soothe your baby before and after he or she is born. It has also been shown that sharing stories with preterm babies familiarizes them with the voices of their mother and other family members. By reading to your preterm baby, you will be participating actively in your baby’s cognitive growth while celebrating this time of joyful anticipation.

You will make a strong emotional connection with your baby each time you read, and your unique voice will become more and more familiar. Daddy, big brother or sister, Grandma and other family members can snuggle close to read to the awaited baby too. And when your newborn finally arrives, you will notice that your baby immediately settles in to hear the story, which he or she can already recognize. This cozy, reading-centered family time that was begun before your baby was born will continue for years to come.

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