Never Too Soon

Copy of Never Too Soon

What is Never Too Soon?

Research shows that it is never too soon to start reading to your child. In fact, children who are read to from infancy have a larger vocabulary and better language skills when they start school. So we are here to help! On this page you’ll find songs, recommended books, and suggested activities for you and your baby to help him or her learn to enjoy language, books and reading. 

Every Child Ready to Read is an early literacy program created by the American Library Association. It suggests that five different activities help lay the foundation for later literacy skills: Singing, Talking, Reading, Writing, and Playing. Everything listed here will fall under one or more of those categories. You can read more about their suggestions and how it helps build literacy skills here.

Songs (2)

Click on the titles for links to the YouTube video!

Spots, Spots, Spots

Spots, spots, spots, spots,
spots, spots, spots, spots
A leopard has lots of spots
What a lot of spots he got
A tiger’s stripes are always nice
But a leopard has lots of spots
Spots, spots, spots, spots,
spots, spots, spots, spots

Changing Diaper

(To the tune of Frere Jacques)
Changing diaper, changing diaper
Lots of fun, lots of fun
You’re no longer stinky, you’re no longer stinky
Nice clean bum, nice clean bum

Lift One Foot, and Then the Other

Lift one foot and then the other,
Lift one foot and then the other
Lift one foot and then the other
Lift them both together.
(Verses: Lift one arm, clap your hands and keep on clapping)

1, 2, 3, Baby’s on my Knee
1, 2, 3,
Baby’s on my knee
Rooster crows
And away she/he goes

Peek A Boo, I See You
(To the tune of Frere Jacques)
Peek a boo, peek a boo
I see you, I see you
I see your button nose, I see your tiny toes
I see you, peek a boo

These are Baby’s Fingers
Here are baby’s fingers,
Here are baby’s toes
Here is baby’s belly button
And round and round it goes.

Where is Thumbkin?
Where is Thumbkin, where is Thumbkin?
Here I am! Here I am!
How are you today, sir? Very well, I thank you.
Run away. Run away.

Two Little Blackbirds
Two little blackbirds sitting on a hill
One named Jack, the other named Jill
Fly away Jack, fly away Jill
Come back Jack, come back Jill!

10 Little Fingers
(To the tune of 10 Little Indians)
I have 1 little, 2 little, 3 little fingers
4 little, 5 little, 6 little fingers
7 little, 8 little, 9 little fingers
10 little fingers on my hands

Itsy Bitsy Spider
Itsy bitsy spider went up the waterspout
Down came the rain and washed the spider out
Up came the sun and dried up all the rain
And the itsy bitsy spider went up the spout again

Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star
Twinkle, twinkle, little star
How I wonder what you are
Up above the world so high
Like a diamond in the sky
Twinkle, twinkle, little star
How I wonder what you are


Songs (1)

When choosing books for your child, look for books with lots of repetition. Books with easy, basic language, with only a few words on each page, and simple illustrations of the important, familiar things in your child’s life are best. Nursery rhymes, lullabies, and songs in book format are also good choices. Board books, cloth books, and plastic “bath” books are sturdy and will hold up to being chewed, spilled on, or tossed on the floor.


Black and White:
Black and white books or other books with high contrast art are perfect for newborns because their eyesight has not developed very much yet.

Look Look by Peter Linenthal

Look at Baby’s House! by Peter Linenthal

Black and White by Tana Hoban

Jane Foster’s Black and White by Jane Foster

Black Cat and White Cat by Claire Garralon



The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Bill Martin Jr.

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr.

Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown


Other Great Board Books:

Indestructibles series: Baby Faces by Kate Merritt

Making Faces by Molly Magnuson

Hello Lamb by Jane Cabrera

Moo, Baa, La La La by Sandra Boynton

The Going-to-Bed Book by Sandra Boynton

Tip, Tip, Dig, Dig by Emma Garcia

Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell

Black Bird Yellow Sun by Steve Light

That’s Not My Kitten by Fiona Watt

In My Nest by Sara Gillingham


Picture Books:

Hello Baby! by Mem Fox

Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes by Mem Fox

Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney

Llama Llama Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney

Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed by Eileen Christelow

Rosa Loves Cars by Jessica Spanyol



Sweet Dreams / Dulces Suenos: Bilingual Spanish-English by Pat Mora

Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes…/Cabeza, Hombros, Piernas, Pies… by Annie Kubler

Global Babies / Bebes del Mundo by Global Fund for Children

Cinco Monitos Brincando en La Cama by Victoria Ortiz

Pio Peep Traditional Spanish Nursery Rhymes

Buenas Noches, Luna by Margaret Wise Brown

The Very Hungry Caterpillar / La Oruga Muy Hambrienta by Eric Carle


Songs (3)

Sensory activities help develop your baby’s brain by building new nerve connections in the brain’s pathways – all while they play! It also helps develop language, fine and gross motor skills, problem solving, and memory capabilities. But what do we mean by “sensory”? To put it simply, sensory play is any activity that someone is actively participating in that engages their seven senses. Wait, seven? You may be saying. I thought there were only five senses! While touch, smell, taste, sight, and hearing are indeed part of your senses, we also have the sense of movement and balance.

Talk to your baby while they explore the activity: how does that feel? Is it soft, squishy, rough, etc? What color is it? What happens when we do this? Even if she can’t answer yet, she learns that questions are invitations for her to respond.

  • Shaving cream in a gallon sized Ziploc bag with some washable paint is lots of fun and easy to make. Spray the shave cream in, drop in a few dollops of paint, and then squeeze as much air out of the bag as possible before sealing. Squish the shaving cream around and talk about how it mixes with the paint and changes colors. You can even practice shapes, numbers, and letters by tracing them onto the bag. We recommend sealing the sides with duct tape just in case!
  • Clear hair gel also works well for sensory bags. Drop in some small items like plastic toys, buttons, sequins, or bath toys for baby to look at and push around inside the bag. Sensory bags can be taped to the floor for tummy time, set on a table or high chair tray for babies who can sit up, or taped on the floor under them while they are in a jumper or exersaucer. Again, make sure it is sealed tightly.
  • Empty water bottles are great sensory toys! Fill with beads, small bells, colorful pom poms, water and oil with food dye, water and colored glitter, rice, water beads, anything that will look interesting or make sound – the possibilities are endless.
  • Sensory hula hoops are perfect for tummy time. Wrap or tie ribbons, yarn, and other textured fabric around the hula hoop and set baby in the center to explore. Here’s a great tutorial if you need more ideas.
  • Lie baby down naked! This is about as simple as it gets, but not having clothes on allows your baby to get all kinds of sensory information from his or her skin. It may look like just laying on the floor and wiggling, but your little one is actually learning how her body relates to the ground beneath her through touch and movement sense.
  • Wash baby’s hands. Rub a little soap into your kiddo’s hands is a great place to start with non-messy sensory play. Make sure to use tear-safe baby shampoo just in case!
  • Brush your little one’s hair with a soft brush. Plenty of newborns don’t have much hair yet, but it still provides a new sensory experience.
  • Use regular washcloth instead of a super-soft baby washcloth to wash baby’s hands and feet. The change in texture is a new sensory experience as well.
  • Wear baby in a sling or wrap so he or she can check out the world!



Moline Public Library catalog – see what we have available before you stop in!

E-materials – check out ebooks and audiobooks right from home!

Java Lab Cafe – why not grab yourself something tasty while you’re here?

Moline Public Library Calendar – Take a look at what events we’ve got coming up. May we suggest Storytime for Littles, our storytime for babies from birth to age 3, or Novels for Naptime, our adult book club for parents?

What We Did in Storytime – Love that song we did in storytime last week? Can’t remember the title of the book we just read? Check out the list of all the books, songs, fingerplays, and more that we use each week in storytime.

How to Get a Library Card – If you don’t have a library card already, getting one is easy.

1,000 Books Before Kindergarten is an awesome reading program we have for little ones who have not started kindergarten yet. Keep track of the books you read with your child and get a small prize after every 100 books. Stop by the Children’s Desk to find out more and pick up your first reading log!

Many thanks to our sponsors!

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