Our Montessori teaching albums all discuss the importance of books for your home or school classroom. Even infants are provided with large picture and word books from the time they show an interest in them.
A good general guideline is to provide three types of books: Books that are at your child's current reading level (if he or she does not yet read, use picture and word books), books that are just beyond your child's current reading level, and books that are more difficult that you can read aloud.
Look for books about real things! Pictures and name labels for infants and toddlers work beautifully, children who are ready to read or just starting enjoy short descriptive books about such topics as the natural world, children in other countries, or things with wheels.
The books you read aloud can range in topic from poems and rhymes to history and and the solar system.
One important note is that when your child is at the library and wants to choose a book, let him or her browse and choose. Developing a love of reading and an interest in exploring the book shelves to see what one might find is invaluable to your child's reading development. Since you always stock the bookshelf with educational material, anything your child chooses to look at independently is supplemental, so you don't have to worry about monitoring and critiquing.
Also, do not tell your child to put a book back because it is too hard or will not interest him or her. If either is the case, your child won't read it. Perhaps you will be surprised. But trial and error needs to be encouraged because we want to help nurture intellectual creativity and the ability to think outside the box.
Encourage Exploration and Creativity
10 years ago