Why do babies love black and white images?

2_week_old-baby with book

11 days old, enjoying Mesmerised board book by Katey Love

At birth a baby’s eyesight is very limited; it is hard for them to focus, and their depth of vision is limited to about 30cm. Black and white images with sharp outlines are therefore much easier for baby to see in these first few months of life. Professor Usha Goswami, director of the Centre for Neuroscience in Education at Cambridge University, explains: “Anything with very obvious contrast – such as black and white edges and lines – is an optimal stimulant for the visual system,” she says. “This type of stimulation basically gets the system up and running”.  A baby’s eyesight will continue to develop over the first 6 months – use of our specially designed black and white, and high-contrast books, will help to nurture that development.

See ‘Baby Vision‘ for a more detailed guide to infant visual development).

baby_vision-simulator

 

Try out this vision simulator to get an idea of what your baby can see when first born and then at each consecutive month: http://tinyeyes.com/index.php

 

This article from well-known paediatrician Dr Sears will also give you more background on why black and white images are important for baby’s development:

http://www.askdrsears.com/topics/parenting/child-rearing-and-development/bright-starts-babys-development-through-interactive-play/playtime-articles/visual-stimulation-newborns

 

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