Dr. Le-Bucklin’s Answer:
Congratulations to you and your wife! I’m sure you are very excited about your twin pregnancy. Having twins is such a blessing. You’re going to love parenting them!
Great question about audiobooks!
Audiobooks are great for older children and adults (as you have found). I love listening to them myself! However, for babies, I recommend parents invest their money in a simple tape or digital recorder and record their own voice instead.
The reason is that babies learn to recognize their parents’ voices by having heard them in the womb. Even before your babies are born, they are already attached to you! As newborns, your voice (and their mother’s voice) will attract their attention more than any other voice. Because of this attachment to you, a recording of your voice would have greater benefit than a commercially prepared audiobook. And while the time investment is greater, it’s probably cheaper in the long run!
You can be as creative as you want with the recordings. You can record yourself talking or even singing to your babies. If you don’t know what to say, you can simply read your favorite books to them. Hearing your voice is what matters.
These personal recordings are especially useful if you decide to leave your child in the care of a nanny or other childcare provider. They can play these recordings for your babies throughout the day. In the long run, these recordings will become cherished keepsakes for your children.
So I suppose the short answer to your question is that audio recordings of your voice are more likely to impact your babies’ development than commercially-prepared audiobooks.
If you do want to buy some commercially-prepared items, I would suggest buying some music recordings. Music (especially classical music) has been shown to have beneficial effects on a baby’s mood and development.
Hope that helps answer your question!
Best wishes! And feel free to contact me anytime! I’m always happy to chat with parents of multiples!
Note: I was recently interviewed by Lani, the mother of triplets and co-founder of the Multiples and More Blog Network. This question was from our interview.