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Ready to play with baby?
Playtime is not only super important for toddlers and up, it’s important for babies too! Playtime is actually developmental work for your baby. By playing games with baby, you will help him her develop motor, memory, and recognition skills.
What looks like downtime is work to little ones, and toys are often the tools for getting the job done.
“Playtime helps develop a baby’s social, intellectual, language, and problem-solving skills,” says Marilyn Segal, PhD, an early childhood studies program director at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale. ~Parents.com
As it turns out that play is hard work! Play and development go hand in hand. It is wonderful for bonding too whether with parents, grandparents, or siblings. As baby plays and interacts with you, he or she feels happier and more secure.
Not sure what games to play? Here are 7 easy ones to get you started…
This one is a classic for a reason and your baby will begin to respond around 4 months.
By the time your baby is four months old, he or she will start to understand that you will come back even though he or she cannot see you for seconds. This is called object permanence. Keep at it even if your baby looks bewildered at first. Your baby will start to understand the coming and going of the peek-a-boo game and it will likely become a favorite.
Tickles and music are a simple and delightful way to play with your baby.
Rymes and songs like “This Little Piggy” and “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” are great for tickle time. You can tickle belly feet or hands while holding him or gently as you sing. Repeat the song or rhyme a couple of times being consistent when you tickle. Baby will start to anticipate it. And you are helping imporve baby’s memory.
Tickle time creates cherished memories for you and baby.
3.Blow A Kiss
Another classic that you may think of as just goodbye training, but it’s a fun game for babies is- blowing kisses.
Teaching baby to blow you and other friends, and family members, kisses is a great game and special for all involved. Say “Blow me a kiss” and then demonstrate. Baby will catch on and join in.
Friends and family will adore getting in on the fun with this one and will feel so special when baby blows them kisses!
Great for babies from 2-6 months, you can help your baby get ready to crawl with the rollover game.
Helping your baby to roll over works on his or her crawling abilities and builds those little muscles. Start baby in the middle of the blanket on back or belly. Help him or her roll from middle to the one edge or the other then back again. You can do this inside or outside if it’s a gorgeous day.
5.Show And Tell
For the baby version of this game, you will be doing the showing and telling. Find objects that are safe for your baby to touch and show them to him or her. Talk about the object to baby- the color, shape, etc. This can be very educational for your baby to listen to your voice and also great bonding time.
This one will become “baby and me” time that you can look forward to!
6.Explore The Spice Rack
Bet you didn’t think of this one!
This idea comes via BabyCenter.
You’re in the kitchen, trying to throw some kind of dinner together when your baby starts wailing. Take her over to the spice rack and introduce her to the intoxicating scent of cinnamon. Rub some on your hand and put it up to your baby’s nose. (Don’t let it get in her eyes or mouth.)
Some scents and spices you could try with baby are vanilla, nutmeg, mint, or cloves. Fragrances will ignite baby senses and engage him or her.
Bubbles are so much fun for babies, just make sure your little one is old enough to focus on them. Bubbles make a great outdoor activity but are also wonderful for bathtime. Just be careful they don’t get into babies mouth and eyes. Bath time is a wonderful time to play games with baby, especially if he or she normally gets fussy.
Do you play any of these games with your baby? What games are your favorite?
Also, check out Grandparents: Helping Them Connect With Your Little One
Do you have a favorite game between you and baby? Let’s hear about it…