One of the best ways to have fun and bond with your child is through play. Forget the super expensive glamour toys and gadgets that light up, rotate, and spin. Mom and dad are the most important part of her life and there is no better toy than the thrill of playing with her parents. Your daughter loves watching your every move and she’ll coo, babble, and twist to get your attention. You’re her best friend and her one and only love (for now) so take the time to treasure these moments.
Developmentally, playtime is not only important to babies, but a necessity for healthy growth. Children who have one-on-one time with their parents build self-confidence, a sense of mastery, and frequently develop a case of the giggles (which helps promote emotional stability and well-being). With each new stage brings the chance for your daughter to develop physical and emotional skills that will last a lifetime. Playtime will inspire her to keep learning and experimenting. Check out these creative playtime games that will have you both laughing and wanting more!
- Peek-a-boo. This super fun, traditional favorite teaches your baby the concept of “object permanence” aka; your baby understands that even if she can’t see something, it still exists. This is a great skill to teach your child to help decrease separation anxiety – especially at night.
- Pat-a-Cake. Another classic. She’ll learn to clap and babble along with you!
- Itsy Bitsy Spider. Your baby will learn to associate words with action. Use voice variations (loud and soft) as you sing the song.
- Hide and Seek. Hide behind an object and let her find you. This will increase her gross motor skills while also teaching her object permanence. If she can’t crawl, sit with her and hide an object behind your back. You’ll achieve the same results – giggles and babbles!
- Bounce her. Sing to her and gently bounce her on your knee (Trot trot is a great rhyme). This will help her learn balance.
- Rollin’ Round the Tree. Get down on the floor with her and roll around. Pretend she’s a tree and you’re a bird flying around her. Any variation of this game is fun. You can pretend to be just about anything. The most important part is that you are down on her level. You can encourage your baby to “hold her head up” by lying in front of her and singing. Or she can practice “rolling” with you.
- Get Down. Any form of floor play is great for your little one. Place a soft blanket or matt on the floor and get down with her. Place her on your tummy or sit with her and clap.
- Mirror Me. Mirrors are a great way to get your baby to begin to recognize herself. Hold your daughter up in front of the mirror and ask “Where’s Amanda?” Then say “There she is!” Your baby will laugh with delight when she see’s herself in the mirror.