Babies learn about the world by touching, tasting and moving in their worlds.
Here are some ideas of ways that you can be intentional in engaging and purposeful in interacting with your tot, to help them develop and gain confidence.
Engaging your Infant:
Treasure Baskets. Fill a basket with objects from around the house for your kids to explore and discover.
Create color coordinated baskets of toys. Watch your kids discover the color similarities.
Montessori and Mirrors. Help your baby’s brain develop as they interact with a mirrored image of themselves.
Teething Necklaces. These are easy to make and your baby will enjoy having something to chew on – perfect for a diaper bag!
Ways Babies Play
Play with Ice. Babies are enthralled with different textures and temperatures.
All you need is ice and a bucket!
Muffin Tins Play. Give your child objects for them to sort and put into muffin tin.
Kids love sorting colored balls in muffin tins.
Colored Bottles. Seal colored water in bottles for your child to shake and explore.
Kids Learn their Colors
Matching Colors. Young children can begin to recognize similarities and differences in objects with this color activity.
Snack and paint – use baby food as finger paint with your new eater.
Practice stacking. Use chunks of food as building blocks with your baby. They can put food on top of each other while they eat.
For older tots who are beginning to enjoy pretend play, consider creating an edible sandbox for them to explore.
Paint for babies to play. Be daring, watch the kids smear and create.
Foster Independence in your Child
Fine Motor Bottle Toy. Your tot can thread toothpicks or other small objects into a bottle.
Grab a pitcher. Practice hand-eye-coordination as your tot pours. As soon as they are able to hold a container, they will love seeing/feeling water pouring.
Baby Obstacle Course. Use pillows and cushions to create an obstacle course for your child to navigate.
Grab a Bowl and a Ball. Play a game of roly bowly as your kids swish the balls in the bowl.
Dumping. As soon as babies learn to drop objects, they will love placing objects into tins and in-time, pouring.
This summer, add some fun to your child’s outdoor play with ice. Add a shoestring to connect your ice cubes for more fun!
Stacking Up and Down. Stack blocks on top of each other and watch your baby topple them over.
Finger Play - these are several different ways you can engage your baby, with only your fingers.
Explore Textures and Prints with a sensory mat made of a variety of animal themed fabrics.
Create a Texture wall. Use embroidery hoops for a variety of textures – hang them low enough for your child to roll to and reach easily.
Create a Play Space. Use mirrors and other brightly colored toys for your child to roll to and reach.
Toys to make for Babies:
Collection of Baby Buckets. These are simple toys you can make for your toddler from recycled items.
Tugging Toy. Make holes in a box and have strings with different textures and things tied to them for your child to pull.
Clipping Toy – toddlers love to clip buckles.
I Spy Bottle. Talk to your baby about the objects they an see inside the bottle as they shake it.
Make a squishy bag. Tape it to the tray on their seat for your kids to explore.
Alphabet matching puzzle. Use foam letters to create a game for your young children.
Create a fabric game for your child to pull and play with a variety of textures.
Keep reading for the 20+ remaining Development of Play Activities for Babies.