I did a post on games to play with baby a while back and you can read that here.
You will hear a lot of moms say that this is their favourite age with their babies and I can see why. Willow is so fun and interactive, but now you can see the fruit of all your labours – when she learns something you can actually see the result of it. Teaching your baby a skill or game results in fun for both of you and baby will often come up and ask to play.
That said be sure to give your child lots of free time play and allow them to direct games as well. Its great for developing their ability to entertain themselves and developing their imagination. Yes even at such a young age!
- Sticky stickers – Buy a big box of those florescnet colour round stickers from your local office supply store and have fun sticking them on baby. This is great for working that pincer grasp as baby peels the sticker off and its great for body awareness and language development. Be sure to say things like “Is there a sticker on your leg?” “Where’s the pink sticker?” or “Can you stick it on your nose?”
- Hide and seek – for those of you who have a crawling tunnel this is great for hide and seek. If not, breathe new life into your baby gym and throw a blanket over it to create a tent (or buy a tent, whatever floats your boat). Willow loves this one and will crawl up to her ‘tent’ to hide spontaneously. She loves it when I make a big deal out of looking for her and finding her. She will pop out and zip back inside with a huge grin on her face. Also, the blanket is great for a game of peek-a-boo.
- Scarf pull – take a few of your silky scarves and a zip up toiletry bag or empty toilet roll. Stuff the scarf inside and let baby pull it out. Willow loves this and it works those little hand muscles nicely. I often will tickle her with the scarf afterwards which is great for body awareness and language development.
- Unpack, repack – This is a favourite in our house and Willow is a big fan. I get a bucket or box and fill it up with toys that are similar (think balls, dolls, etc.) or what Willow really loves is my big box of nail polish. She will then sit for ages and unpack and repack it. Each object gets explored and discarded before she moves onto the next one. Just make sure you rotate objects as boredom can set in if the same one is used too often. This is also great for language – what colour is it, how does it feel, what shape is it…
- Nursery Rhymes – This is one for all ages, but I’ve found Willow particularly enjoys rhymes with actions or anticipation. Favourites in this household include: This Little Piggy, If You’re Happy and You Know It, The Insy Winsy Spider, Humpty Dumpty and Round and Round the Garden. She will clap along, watch the actions avidly or sit with a grin on her face all tensed while waiting to be tickled. It’s incredibly cute.
What games do you play with your little one? I’m always looking to try new things – Lord knows singing the same rhyme a millions times gets very old.