Peek-a-boo is the favourite early game of babies everywhere. Between the development of the early concept of object permanence and the direct face-to-face interaction of a loved one, this is the ideal learning and bonding experience.
Peek-a-boo books abound on the shelves of most libraries and bookstores, however Peek-a-Who? by Nina Laden is a lovely book for you and your child that adds extra early childhood developments concepts to make the reading experience even more fun.
Peek-a-Who? has simple rhymes to engage baby and ends with a mirror for baby to see himself. The inclusion of these concepts make it an ideal book to take baby from around 6 months into toddlerhood. Younger babies can appreciate the simple rhymes and giggle with the repetition. Readers can use the voice inflection to introduce the concept of surprise and discovery. The mirror on the final page can be used to show baby an image of himself, something that fascinates him at this stage.
As babies age they can turn the pages themselves and engage in the peek-a-boo game. As the reader, you can encourage predictions with strong cues from both the rhyme and the illustration. Phonoelogical awareness is encouraged through these predictions, an important early literacy skill. The repetitive nature of the book will also help the child start reading parts back, perhaps answering each question as it is presented.
Peek-a-Who? is well set up to take the learning experience past the last page. For young babies, the mirror can extend the game of peek-a-boo with baby’s own image. For older babies and early toddlers the game of peek-a-boo can move past this book. Try covering object in your child’s room with the pages of the book and ask pee-a-who? The game can be extended to use special stuffed animals or even siblings.
The range of learning options makes this is a nice book to read with siblings. The younger baby can focus on peek-a-boo games and the bright colour pictures while an older child can practice rhyming concepts with the parent asking, “what else rhymes with who?” or by asking for the sounds connected to the images in the book (ie: cow, train, elephant).
Reading just 20 minutes a day with your baby can go a long way to developing early learning skills but, more importantly it is a wonderful bonding time for parent and child, so grab a copy of Peek-a-Who? or whatever book you choose and cuddle up for a good read.
Peek-a-Who? gets five flashlights on our Under the Covers rating scale for not only being a good read but for creating a fun bonding experience for you and your baby.