Hello Little Babies
This touching story, by Alison Lester, dives into the world of babies. Each page details a familiar experience that the babies will encounter across their day and as they grow - eating, sleeping, moving. Subtly but significantly the book focuses on the diversity of how each child will encounter those universal experiences. The story at once shows the connections between all people, the bonds we share from babyhood, while also celebrating the rich differences that make us distinct.
The story introduces us to a group of babies. Their cultural backgrounds, or countries of residence, are not explicitly stated but the illustrations subtly convey a sense of ethnic diversity. The pages then introduce a series of experiences that links all babies - such as eating -and show how each of our characters engage in that experience. In this simple way, a powerful message of diversity and tolerance is communicated.
This beautifully illustrated, hardback book would be perfect as part of a bedtime routine. It could become a beautiful family tradition to share this story each night before bed. Reading it regularly will help to remind a beloved baby of the journey of growth ahead of them as well as the diverse world of peers around them.
In my Montessori environment our 'Playgroup' children, who are still close to the developmental stages described in the story, connect instantly with the familiar life experiences.
Our older Preschoolers who read the story enjoy reminiscing on their infancy, reflecting on their growth and sharing observations about the babies in their lives (such as younger siblings or cousins). It is fascinating to hear the discussions that occur between Preschoolers as they scrutinise the images and descriptions and compare these to their own lives, celebrating both the connections and contrasts. We even created a special activity to extend upon the beauty of the book, wherein the Preschool children use matching cards to find pairs of pictures of babies from around the world.