Little Readers Read-a-thon

Even the tiniest babies need frequent exposure to spoken language to ensure optimal early brain development.

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The Little Readers Read-a-thon has finished for 2019!

Please continue to access the resources developed to promote reading in the neonatal unit and we hope you will participate in the event in September 2020. Dates for the 2020 event will be announced in January 2020.

Reading really matters

During a baby’s time in the Neonatal Unit critical brain development is occurring, including the development of the pathways in the brain that control language skills. By reading to their babies, parents are not only bonding with them and reducing some of the stress associated with being in the NICU, but they are also supporting their baby’s brain development.

Babies need frequent exposure to meaningful auditory experiences to ensure optimal early brain development.

Research has identified a number of benefits of reading from early infancy, with a lasting effect on language, literacy and early reading skills with a boost in vocabulary at four years of age. See list of scholarly articles below.


You can download and print the following resources:

Supporting evidence

The following publications and resources explore reading and language in the neonatal setting.


Exposure to Language