You are the best “plaything” for your baby! The interactions between you and your baby help you to get to know each other, and your baby learns to trust and depend on you. The bond between the two of you grows stronger and it helps your infant to feel loved and secure, which is so important for their wellbeing.
Play experiences help parts of your baby’s brain to link together. It helps your baby learn about the world and how to interact with it. It also helps your baby with language development.
Play can also teach you a lot about your baby’s personality. It won’t take long to figure out what your baby likes, whether it be rough and silly or quiet and calm.
Simple play can include:
- Singing songs and nursery rhymes
- Tickling, toe counting, blowing raspberries
- Making silly faces, smiling and laughing
- Giving your baby objects with different textures to touch and feel
- Taking your baby for walks around the house or the yard talking about what you see and feel
- Reading to your baby. It is never too early to start.
- Giving your baby “tummy time” each day. (You can begin at one or two months for brief periods, increasing the time at 3 or 4 months when the neck and shoulder muscles are more developed.). Your baby can practice holding up their head and they will get a chance to see things from a different point of view. You can even join them for a little tummy time if you are able.
Just like you, there are times when your baby won’t feel like playing and they will let you know, but don’t miss out on the opportunity to “play” with your little one, for it is their work.