Purpose of this Blog...

You may have noticed that not all books are equal in capturing children's imaginations and in cultivating those innocent, tender souls. My goal is to help you find the ones that do!
(Painting by Mary Cassatt: "Mrs Cassatt Reading to her Grandchildren" -1888)

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Chewable Books for Teething Babies? You Choose.

Copyright by CartoonStock
(used with permission)
In my past post "How to Find the Best Books for Babies and Toddlers", I recommended lots of great board book titles to choose from because they have sturdy pages for little hands and mouths.

Well...when my grandson's first tooth appeared he was barely five months old!  We'd sit down to read his little board books with him, and suddenly all he wanted to do was chomp on them.  "Gumming" the books was one thing, but we witnessed first hand how all-out gnawing with sharp little teeth could eventually take its toll on even the sturdiest board books!

My daughter and I decided to go on a search for some soft cloth books,hoping to preserve our board books past the teething stage (and for later grandchildren, right??)
We were happy to discover lots of soft book choices for babies at our local bookstore -- many more than when my own children were little!  

Here are some benefits of soft books for young (teething) babies:  

  • Light-weight cloth books are easier for young babies to hold than board books.
  • They're chewable!
  • They're washable!
  • Pages are squishy and easy to turn.
  • Plastic versions are perfect for the bath.
  • The books are easy to stuff into a crowded diaper bag.
  • They make for a great game of hide-and-seek.

  • These days at almost eight months old (and working on tooth #4), my baby grandson seems to have pretty much gotten book chewing out of his system.  Since we let him chew on the soft books to his heart's content, he again loves sitting and listening while we read him board books.

    He's also started holding his board books and turning the pages on his own - often using his feet!

    Board books vs. soft books? Whatever you choose for your baby to chew, choose wisely...

    Go here to read my post about what to look for in choosing the BEST books for babies and toddlers.  And click here for some of our personal favorites.

    And follow these "Tips for Reading Aloud to Babies and Toddlers" - from Jim Trelease:
    1. Your main objective is to teach your child to love the printed word. 
    2. Pretend you’re having a party to introduce the world to your child and books are the guests you’re introducing. 
    3. Attention spans are built over pages and pages, not overnight. 
    4. Caress the child while reading. 
    5. Point to objects on the page while reading.
    6. The story becomes clearer with repeat readings.
    7. Board books are meant to be handled and chewed on.
    8. Make certain times ritually story times — bed time, bath time, potty time, nap time, or snack time.


    1. Have you checked out Indestructibles yet? I think Workman publishes them. I so wish they had been around when my girls were babies. We had just started to receive into the bookstore I worked at when we closed. There are a lot more now! They're like thin paperbacks, but no matter how you bend them, bite them, etc, they retain their shape.

      1. Wow - I've never even heard of those (and didn't see them at the bookstore, but maybe we just missed them). I'll definitely have to find them - thanks Danzel!

    2. And those foam books are no good when the baby is teething.

      Thank you for the reminder! We have that cloth Peter Rabbit book (our little one is now five months, and definitely wanting things to chomp on!)... I just have to find it.

      1. I LOVE this cloth Peter Rabbit book - my daughter gave it to him in his little Easter Basket this year. :)