Everyone's favorite late night talk show host, Jimmy Fallon, is back with another adorable picture book, and this time, it's all about baby. This is Baby, out Oct. 8 and available for pre-order now, follows The Tonight Show host's previous two New York Times Bestselling picture books, Your Baby's First Word Will be Dada and Everything is Mama. Now it's baby's turn in the spotlight with this charming and delightful read-aloud book, which teaches new babies the words for the various parts of their body. So, can we talk about how sweet this would be for a baby shower or new baby gift? I can practically hear it being added to registries around the globe as I write this post.
In This is Baby, Jimmy’s sweet, humorous text will help little ones learn the vocabulary to their various body parts in a simple introduction to the human body and first words. Combined with the lively and bright artwork of Miguel Ordóñez, who illustrated Fallon's first two books, you have a cheerful combination that will be just as entertaining for adults as it is to baby. As Jimmy wrote in a press release for the book, “I was gonna write a book called There’s Nothing Worse Than Installing a Car Seat, but this was a much cuter topic." Having painstakingly installed a car seat or two in my day, he is certainly right about that.
With the simple rhyming structure in This is Baby, your little one will learn all about his eyes, nose, fingers and toes, and of course, his ears, lips, knees, and hips. See what Jimmy did there? Early childhood experts have found that rhyming is a great way to learn early phonic skills, which is the ability to hear, identify, and manipulate letter sounds. Additionally, nursery rhymes give children practice in pitch and volume, as well as language rhythm. And, of course, rhymes are just plain fun. See baby's shoulders shrugging? Baby's arms are made for super-hugging! I mean, c'mon... that's super cute, and just the excuse you need to give your little one a big ol' snuggle.
The importance of reading to babies (even in the third trimester of pregnancy) has also been well-documented. In an article for Psychology Today, The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that parents should begin reading to infants as soon as possible, as it exposes children to new and different words that parents don’t often use in everyday conversation. Studies have shown that the number of words infants produce and understand is predicted by how much they are read to as babies. Additional benefits include the comfort that comes from hearing a parent's familiar and soothing voice, so reading a book every night helps to establish a calm and consistent nighttime routine. Looking at books together can also potentially foster an early interest in reading before children head off to school. Not to mention, the bonding time that reading a book with your child can foster. I have such wonderful memories of reading my daughters' favorite books each night, and I can see how a book like This is Baby could become a favorite in your home, too.
As a quick aside, I must say I was especially touched by the dedication page in This is Baby, which reads, "To my babies: Winnie, Franny, and Nancy. And to my mom - I finally get it. And I'm enjoying every second." Jimmy's mother, with whom he was very close, passed away in late 2017. What a wonderful tribute from a loving son. As mentioned above, This is Baby will be on sale Oct. 8, 2019 but is available for pre-order from all major retailers immediately. Happy reading!