Cognitive Development

Construction of thought processes, including remembering, problem solving, and decision-making, from childhood through adolescence to adulthood.

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Brain development in infants & early childhood

A newborn baby's brain is fairly developed to carry out all the bodily functions throughout his life, but the sections of the brain that are involved in regulating emotions, language, and abstract thought grow and develop after birth. A child's brain develops manifold during the first 3 years of life. The development of a child's brain is influenced by a variety of factors such as a child's relationships, the experiences he/she has, the stimulation he/she receives and the environment.    Development of Mature Brain Cells Myelin is tissue that insulates brain cells with a sheath that ensures clear transmission across synapses; the reason young children process information slowly is because their brain cells lack myelin needed for quicker transmission of nerve impulses. A child's experiences affect the growth of mature brain cells way into adulthood.   Role of Breast Milk in Brain Development Breast milk contains various fatty substances that support healthy brain development in babies. Mothers must breastfeed their babies exclusively for the first 6 months of life. In case a mother is unable to breastfeed her child due to breastfeeding problems such as low milk supply, she can give formula milk such as Enfamil to the baby for optimum brain development. Enfamil is enriched with essential nutrients such as DHA and ARA. Enfamil is the only infant formula inspired by breast milk and is specially designed to meet the nutritional needs of your growing baby. Use code MYLO20 to avail of a flat 20% discount on Enfamil while ordering from Enfashop.   Newborns and Infants According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, newborns and infants are beginning to recognize voices, focus their eyes, and develop bonds of love and trust. This will be the foundation of the learning process of memory, language, thinking, and reasoning. At this stage your child is like a sponge in the way he will absorb and be impacted by his experiences, so the way you hold, cuddle, and interact with the child will set the basis for how he interacts with you and others in coming years.   Warnings for Newborns and Infants Though his brain is growing fast, your newborn will still have weak neck muscles; always support his head and avoid situations that could shake him.   Toddler Toddler, a child becomes mobile. With this will come independence and defiance. Be strong and be an all-star parent, and provide your child with balanced support and encouragement during this phase in spite of the personal challenges your patience may face; research cited by the Department of Health and Human Services has shown that both intensive and prolonged stress can disrupt early brain development and compromise the functioning of her nervous and/or immune system. Specifically, experiencing unhealthy stress when young can affect the development of your child’s stress circuits, causing the child to develop a low-stress threshold and become overly reactive to adverse experiences throughout life.   How to enhance your toddler's brain development? Apart from the stimulation, you provide to your child, you also need to supplement your child's nutrition with a nutritious milk powder that can assist in the optimal mental and physical development of your child. Enfagrow is a great choice for this since it is fortified with DHA and also contains various minerals and vitamins which facilitate your child's development. Use code MYLO20 to avail of a flat 20% discount on Enfagrow while ordering from Enfashop.  

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These popular 20 games will boost development of your baby

Your baby's attention span will vary a lot, depending on his age, his temperament, and his mood. Sometimes he'll enjoy a game for as long as 20 minutes, but more often you'll need to modify the game every five minutes or so. You'll know your baby's loving your antics when he's turning toward you, smiling, or laughing. But if he squirms away from you, looks away, or cries, it's time to change the activity. Not every baby will catch on to every game. Don't allow this to freak you out, but of course if you have concerns about a possible developmental delay, talk to your baby's doctor. Birth to 3 months To the outside observer, a newborn basically seems like a pooping ball of protoplasm. Your baby will mostly just lie there, except when he's crying. So how can you connect with him and have fun? Your best chance of doing this is to engage your baby's senses: touch, sight (remember, your baby is still very nearsighted), smell, and hearing. (Let's leave taste out for now.) By the end of his first three months, your baby may reach out and try to grab things and will be fascinated by sounds, smells, and patterns. Note: It may take your newborn several seconds to respond to you or he may not respond much at all. Be patient – you may need to keep trying or wait a while for him to enter an alert, responsive state. 10 games your baby will love: Newborn to 3 months old Newborns constantly take in new sights, sounds, smells, and more. Help your baby learn about the world by trying these 10 fun games. Dance, Dance Revolution In the afternoons when my own baby got grumpy, nothing worked as well as dancing with her. I'd put on some music – she preferred soulful tunes from Stevie Wonder and James Brown – and either put her in the sling or hold her in my arms. At first she preferred soft swaying. Later on she liked me to swing her in the air or bump her up and down rather rudely. (Just be sure to offer neck support and don't shake your baby.) When your arms get tired, put your baby down and keep up the dance. Silly exaggerated movements like jazz hands or shaking your butt are particularly funny to babies. Close the drapes so the neighbors won't see. Let's Look at Stuff Most of your early playtime will be spent showing your baby stuff. Any object in the house that won't poison, electrocute, or otherwise hurt him is fair game. Babies love egg beaters, spoons, wire whisks, spatulas, books and magazines with pictures, bottles of shampoo or conditioner (don't leave your baby alone with these!), record albums, colorful fabrics or clothes, fruits and vegetables, and so on. Keep a little stash of objects beside you and sit with your baby. When the moment's right, whip something out like a magician. "Look, Kyle, Daddy's bicycle bell." Hold the object still about a foot from his face and stare at it yourself. Hey, now that you look at it, that bicycle bell is kind of interesting. Congratulations! You're thinking like a baby! Oh, and don't expect babies to really "get" books at this age. You'll know they're enjoying them by their way of getting still and watchful when you bring a favorite book out. Babies don't tend to sit through a whole story, though, and when they're a few months older they'll grab the books from you and close them. This is all developmental stuff. Babies love looking at books and cuddling close to you, but they usually don't care about the plot. Journey Into Mom's Closet You haven't spent a lifetime accumulating a closetful of bright, slinky, tactile clothing for nothing. Dig into your closet and show your baby your cashmere sweater, your cottony-soft favorite jeans, your brilliant plaid skirt. Run soft or silky fabrics over her face, hands, and feet. Lay fuzzy stuff down on the floor and put your baby on top of it. In a few months, your baby will want to run her hands over anything beaded, embroidered, or otherwise embellished. But for now, she may just be content to gaze in wonder. Hey! What's Over My Head? You'll be amazed at how much fun you can have with the simplest stuff around your house. Here are three ideas to start you off: Tie or tape some ribbons, fabric, or other interesting streamers onto a wooden spoon and dangle them gently over and in front of your baby's face. Take a floaty scarf and fling it into the air, letting it settle on your baby's head. Tie a toy to an elastic string (like the kind used for cat toys) and bounce it up and down in front of your baby's face, saying "Boing! Boing!" every time it descends. Remember, never leave your baby alone with strings or ribbons that could encircle his neck or that he could get into his mouth. The Diva Within You may have a terrible voice – but your kid doesn't know it! Now's the time to sing at volume 10, so set free that opera voice inside you. Your baby may like absolutely anything you sing, but there are some classics you should know. "Itsy Bitsy Spider" was the only song that made my baby stop crying when she was on a jag. And most kids like any song with movements – "The Wheels on the Bus," "Row, Row, Row Your Boat," "Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes," and "Patty-Cake," to name a few. (If you don't remember the words to a favorite song, just look online.) You may feel silly at first, but as your child gets into it, so will you. Try adding your baby's name to the song: "Old Mac Ethan had a farm," "Kate is my sunshine, my only sunshine," and so on. Try songs with silly sounds or animal noises in them, like "Witch Doctor" or "How Much Is That Doggie in the Window?" Try singing a song in a low growly voice and then in a high squeaky voice, to see which gets the most reaction. Try singing the song breathily into your baby's ear, or use a hand puppet (or a napkin or sock willing to play the part of a hand puppet). And get used to singing, because this could begin to eat up a significant portion of your day. 4 to 6 months At this age, your baby will become a lot more physical, learning how to roll over and even sit up. She can now hold, handle, and mouth objects, and she'll spend a good part of her busy days doing so (meaning extra vigilance is needed on your part). Games can get more physical now. Your baby might enjoy knee rides or tickle games. She's also more responsive to you, making noises and meeting your eyes. Smell the Spice Rack You're in the kitchen, trying to throw some kind of dinner together when your baby starts wailing. Take him over to the spice rack and introduce him 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 his eyes or mouth.) If he likes it, try others: Vanilla, peppermint, cumin, cloves, nutmeg, and many other herbs and spices have intriguing fragrances that your baby might love. Other household goods are fragrant, too: Dad's shaving lotion, Mom's hand cream. Sniff out everything yummy – just be careful not to let your baby eat it! 10 games your baby will love: 4 to 6 months old Now that your baby is more alert, make him smile with these 10 fun games that are perfect for bonding and developing new skills. Bubbles, Bubbles Everywhere There's something magical about bubbles, and at this point your baby can see far enough away to focus on them. Blow bubbles when she's getting fussy waiting for the bus and watch the tears dry up. Blow bubbles in the park to attract older kids who'll caper nearby and entertain your baby in the process. Blow bubbles in the bathtub or out on the porch when it's late afternoon and your baby is cranky. Bubbles are unbelievably cheap, easily transportable, and endlessly fascinating for babies. I'm Gonna Get You! Your baby is old enough to have a sense of anticipation now. And no baby can resist your coming at him mock-menacingly with a threat of hugs, kisses, or tickles. Here's what you could say: "Hey, Sweetpea! I see you over there sitting up! Well, that just makes you closer to my lips and I'm going to come over there and kiss you! I'm going to steal a kiss, baby! I'm coming! I'm coming! I... gotcha!" Then cover your baby in smooches. In our house we threaten to eat the baby and punctuate our advances with lip chomps on her fat little feet. A delicacy! When your baby's older you can modify this game to include a chase around the house – this works wonderfully as a way to get your child out the door when you're in a rush. This Little Piggy Touch your baby's toes in turn, starting with the big toe. Say, "This little piggy went to market, this little piggy stayed home, this little piggy had roast beef, this little piggy had none. And this little piggy went wee-wee-wee all the way home." As you say that last part, run your fingers up your baby's belly. This game is useful for putting on socks and shoes or distracting your baby during diaper changes. You can also play this game in the bathtub with a squirt bottle targeting your baby's toes. Find two perfect, development-boosting activities for every week of your baby's first year. Tummy Time It's important to have your baby spend time on her tummy, even if she protests vociferously. Get down on the floor with your baby. Look her in the eye as you lie on your own belly. Lay your baby down on a towel and use it to gently roll her from side to side. Try saying, "Oops-a-daisy, Oops-a-daisy" as you roll her. Fly, Baby, Fly! Now that your baby can hold his head up, it's time to hoist him into the air. You can play that he's a rocket ship, flying him over you and making realistic rocket noises. You can play that your baby is in an elevator, which advances up floor by floor before sinking quickly to the bottom (my husband likes to bump noses with our baby and say "Ding!" at this point). Or pretend that your baby's doing a helicopter traffic report. 7 to 9 months Your baby's becoming an expert at sitting and may soon be crawling as well. Encourage these physical feats by celebrating each new milestone with claps and a cheer: "Yay, you sat up! Amazing baby!" The ability to transfer objects from hand to hand and the fabled pincer grasp are part of your baby's increasing hand control (which means you'll be forced to carry a container of O-shaped cereal with you at all times for the next year). Your baby also begins to understand that when an object moves out of sight, it hasn't disappeared from the face of the earth. This discovery makes games like peek-a-boo a favorite. Touch It, Hold It, Bang It If your baby has one object, she'll bang it on the table. If she has two objects, she'll bang them together, hold them up to the light, squint at them, bang them separately on the table, hit the table with both at the same time, see if the object sounds different when hit using the left hand rather than the right hand, and on and on. Help her out by handing over objects that make interesting sounds: hollow containers, metal spoons, bells. Pay attention to tactile sensations as well: Your baby will be fascinated by an embossed greeting card or the slickness of Mom's enameled jewelry box. A baby with strands of cooked spaghetti to play with will be thoroughly entranced. I Can Control the World Babies love cause and effect at this age, as in: I do this, the light comes on. I do that, the light goes off. Showing your baby how to work light switches, faucets, doorbells, and more will thrill him – but can make life more difficult for you when he insists on being held up to work the lights yet again. Instead, you may want to offer a other dangers (dressers with drawers pulled out can turn over on a child) and then let your baby go to town. Obstacle Course If your baby's crawling, scooting, or walking, she may enjoy the challenge of having to move over things. (This is great for developing her motor skills, too. Pillows, tired parents, and laundry make good obstacles. Sleeping cats do not. So Many Variations on Peek-a-boo The classic: Hold up a towel between your face and your baby's and ask, "Where's Sam? There's Sam!" over and over again. You can vary this game in a million ways. Hide behind a door and make your baby push it open to see you. Hide behind a chair and pop out first from above then from the sides. Go behind a corner with another person and alternate who jumps out and yells "Boo!" Keep a selection of hats behind the couch and pop up wearing a different one each time. A surefire laugh-getter is to put a hat on your head, low enough to cover your eyes, and let your baby take it off, saying "Oh!" in surprise each time he does it. (This will also guarantee that you'll never wear a hat in peace again.) Roll Play Babies are fascinated by balls and how they move. You'll get a big laugh by juggling or tossing balls up in the air and letting them hit the floor while you make a silly sound effect: "Whoops!" Roll a soft ball toward your baby and watch her grab and squeeze it. Eventually, with encouragement, she'll roll the ball back toward you. And someday she'll be able to kick and toss the ball or drop it into a big bowl or bucket. For now, bounce and roll. 10 to 12 months Developmentally, your baby has suddenly morphed into an almost-toddler. Games that allow him to practice so-called gross motor skills such as standing, pulling up, and climbing are important for him now. Your baby will also like to work on his fine motor skills by fiddling with the tag on your shirt or the pages of a book – and maybe your breasts or bra if he's still nursing. Rearrange and Re-rearrange Your baby is figuring out the connections between objects in the world. She'll love to stack and arrange objects, as well as fill and empty them. Give your baby a box that's easy to open (like a shoe box) and show her how to put things inside and take them out. At our house, this game quickly evolves into "Take everything out of Mommy's purse and fling it wildly around the living room," which is why I no longer carry change or pens. Another way to play this game: Get a bunch of cups (maybe even stackable measuring cups – ooh, two toys in one!) and show your baby how to pour water, sand, or cornmeal from one to the other, or into a larger container. The Endless Cruise Once your baby is up on his feet, you can encourage cruising by placing a favorite toy at the far end of the couch or over on the coffee table. Try enticing your baby by putting one of your toys, such as your or sunglasses, a distance away and cruising on your knees toward it. Your baby may find this amusing and attempt to join you. Encourage your baby to push an object around the room. Push toys and large empty boxes work well. Avoid folding chairs, which can fold up unexpectedly. Top That Kid Babies this age love to imitate. Encourage this behavior by making a ridiculous noise and then nodding at your baby to go ahead and try a noise. She may imitate you or make her own noise, which you can imitate. Or you can make up a new noise of your own. You can also play this game with faces or movements – our kid likes to raise her arms in a V shape and wave them around. When we do it back, her expression is of someone witnessing magic. The Bath Is Fun No longer is your baby content to sit in the tub and be washed. Older babies want to stand up, splash, grab your hair, pat the shower curtain, and so on. (Note: Never leave a baby unattended in the bath, not even for a minute.) Encourage the fun by adding lots of toys to the tub. Plenty of stuff around the house can be endlessly filled, drained, poured from or into, and floated. Pile up some plastic cups, yogurt containers, funnels, and squeeze bottles, and bring them into the bath along with any of your baby's plastic toys. Poke holes in the top of a plastic bottle with a flat cap to make a homemade watering can. Let your baby feel the sensation of the water dripping onto him and show him how to cut off the flow by blocking it with his hand. Use your homemade toy to give his rubber ducky a shower. At the end of the bath, drain the toys in a plastic colander or a net bag suction-cupped to the side of the tub. Hopefully your baby is clean, happy, and ready to sleep. Wasn't that fun?

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Baby developmental milestones chart: 7 to 12 months

  Though you’ll find some specifics, like when babies sit up , “normal development” refers to these skills: Gross motor skills: using large groups of muscles, balancing, and changing position (sitting, standing, walking, etc.) Fine motor skills: using hands for smaller, more refined movements (playing, eating, etc.) Language skills: communicating via body language and understanding what others are saying Cognitive skills: more refined thinking skills, like reasoning and remembering Social skills: expressing feelings and responding to the feelings of others one in six children will have a developmental delay, but that doesn’t mean your baby will face long-term issues. Missing a few monthly milestones is not cause for panic. There are many factors that influence when infant milestones happen. In most cases, your baby just needs a little extra time. Babies born prematurely, for example, are more likely to hit each milestone counting from their due date, not their day of birth. Talk to your pediatrician if you have any concerns. 7 Month Baby Milestones In month 7, baby’s eyesight is improving, allowing for more coordination.  Transfering objects from one hand to another While your baby has explored objects by touch and mouth for months now, around month 7, baby will start transferring objects from from one hand to another, displaying spatial awareness. Improving vision Babies eye control and eye-body coordination becomes more refined. Improved depth perception allows babies to reach for toys and other objects. What’s more, babies’ color vision should be fairly strong by this age! 8 Month Baby Milestones In month 8, baby is on the move and better able to communicate with you.  Learning object permanence Their brains continue to amaze as they start to understand object permanence. This is the psychological phenomenon that helps folks understand that when something disappears from view, it doesn’t mean that it’s gone forever. (In other words, when mommy leaves the room, she will come back.) It may seem like small potatoes to grown adults, but think of the amazing intellectual leaps this takes for infants! Crawling The developmental milestone of crawling may not happen all at once or in a linear fashion—and some babies will only crawl for a short period of time. Others babies won’t crawl the way you’d expect to, crawling sideways or scooting their bottom along the floor. Crawling is very important—it not only strengthens baby’s muscles, but it also improves baby’s brain function. It’s tempting to hold baby up and try to teach them to walk—it’s such an exciting time—but a little bit of patience can really help baby. Experts saycrawling improves hand-eye coordination, plus improves comprehension, concentration, and memory.  Saying first words Your baby will be communicating now more than ever by the end of these months. She will be repeating sounds like “bababa” or, very adorably, “mamama.” (Though fair warning, mamas: Baby is likely to say Dada first.) Additionally, words start to carry meaning at this stage. You’ll find she understands simple words like, “no.” What’s more, she’ll begin to use her fingers to point, further associating movement with communication and comprehension. 9 Month Baby Milestones In month 9, baby’s brain is working hard—he/she is starting to use objects for their intended purpose.  Standing Babies should be able to stand holding on to your hands. You may even witness your baby pulling himself up. Improved dexterity Those jerky arm movements have long since disappeared. Babies are now able to wield objects more efficiently. Their improved dexterity might mean banging or shaking toys (or anything else they can get their hands on! Careful!)  This baby milestone also indicates increased cognitive function. You may notice baby beginning to use household objects for their intended purpose. For example, they may mimic drinking out of a cup (or actually do so!). This will also become apparent with pretend play, which should be just about starting. Look forward to baby pretending to talk on the phone and engaging in other imaginative play. 10 Month Baby Milestones In month 10, the fun really begins—baby understands and engages in simple games.  Cruising Baby may be walking while holding onto you or furniture. Playing interactive games By this point, babies can understand simple games (think peekaboo), find hidden objects, or take things in and out of a container. Encourage all of these behaviors! They will help develop those all important fine motor skills and every bit of playtime is also learning time. 11 Month Baby Milestones In month 11, you’ll notice baby’s flourishing personality and his/her desire to explore.  Starting to explore Baby will take all of those newfound gross motor skills like sitting, crawling, and cruising to start checking everything out. No cabinet or shelf is safe, my friends! Take steps to baby proof and make extra sure cleaning supplies, toiletries, and medicine cabinets are well off limits for baby. Better yet, work on getting any toxic junk out of your house! (See how to make natural cleaners for your home.) Developing their distinct personality Babies start to understand emotions better, reading and reacting to your emotional state. This level of communication and interaction deepens as they are able to use their bourgeoning vocabulary to state what they want and need. 12 Month Baby Milestones In month 12, baby’s brain has more than doubled in size! He/she is walking and talking.  Beginning to walk Here’s another developmental milestone you’ve been waiting for! Around 12 months, babies may begin to walk! They may still need a bit of help or support, but the pitter patter of those precious little feet are on the horizon. Improving language skills Watch out! At this stage, children should start repeating the words you say. They should already have a small vocabulary, and they will be practicing simple gestures like waving bye or shaking their head yes and no. Baby Milestones Chart Month   Milestones Month 1: Baby is getting acquainted with the outside world.     • Reacting to sights and sounds • Displaying reflexes Month 2: Baby’s development centers around his relationship with you and other caregivers.    • Paying attention to faces and recognizing people • Cooing • Smiling • Supporting their own head Month 3: Baby’s working on her coordination.    • Connecting sound, sight, and movement • Grasping objects Month 4: Baby’s cognitive, social, and motor skills start to develop at a rapid pace.     • Copying sounds, movements, and facial expressions • Rolling over • Babbling • Laughing Month 5: Baby’s becoming more expressive and preparing for crawling, pulling himself up, and walking.    • Smiling at the mirror • Expressing new emotions • Refining basic movements Month 6: Baby’s narrowing in on his communication and motor skills.    • Responding to their own name • Moving… a lot • Sitting Month 7: Baby’s eyesight is improving, allowing for more coordination.    • Transfering objects from one hand to another • Improving vision Month 8: Baby is on the move and better able to communicate with you.     • Learning object permanence • Crawling • Saying first words Month 9: Baby’s brain is working hard—he/she is starting to use objects for their intended purpose.     • Standing • Improved dexterity Month 10: The fun really begins—baby understands and engages in simple games.    • Cruising • Playing interactive games Month 11: You’ll notice baby’s flourishing personality and his/her desire to explore.     • Starting to explore • Developing their distinct personality Month 12: Baby’s brain has more than doubled in size! He/she is walking and talking.     • Beginning to walk • Improving language skills What to Do If Your Baby Isn’t Meeting Milestones All of baby’s firsts are important, but missing a few monthly milestones is usually not cause for panic. Your baby’s doctor will be watching for baby’s developmental milestones during each well child visit. If there’s any concern, the pediatrician may recommend a developmental assessment test to determine if any treatment or intervention is needed. If your doctor gives the all clear, but you still have concerns, get a second opinion. Remember: You know your child’s movements and patterns best. Even if it is just a nagging feeling, never be afraid to talk to your healthcare provider about any concerns. content source

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2-month-old, first week: Growth, care and more

Your baby at two months old Drum roll please... It’s the moment you've been waiting for since you met your tiny little baby all those weeks ago. Around now you should be getting your first lopsided smile – not wind, but a perfect little smile. Hopefully it will make all those sleepless nights worthwhile, or at least bearable for a bit longer. Maybe your baby smiled at six weeks old, or maybe you might have to wait another month – it’s not an exact science, so don't worry. Read on below to find out more about the developments you might expect to see from your 2 month old baby. Your baby’s senses at two months old Vision Colour differences are becoming clearer to your baby, and they start to distinguish between colours. Your baby will still prefer bright primary colours and clear, bold designs and shapes but they can now see around 60cm from their face. Encourage your baby by showing them bright pictures. Hearing At 2 months old your babies hearing will be becoming a better listener and they will be able to differentiate between voices they’ve heard more frequently. Regularly talking (or singing) to your baby is a great way to get them used to your voice and also a way to sooth and calm them as they become more familiar. Your baby’s motor skills at two months old  Kicking and waving  Your baby’s movements are becoming less jerky and slightly more co-ordinated. They start to love kicking out when lying down, which is great exercise and helps strengthen their legs. They may also wave their little fists in excitement. At least we hope it’s excitement.  Pushing up and rolling  Your baby may have enough neck muscle power to hold their head up for short periods when they’re lying on their tummy or on your shoulder – but not for long. You might find your baby is now rolling around more. They won’t yet be able to fully roll onto their front (although that will come soon!) but you’ll still want to keep an eye on them if you have them elevated e.g. during a nappy change.  Grasping and unclasping  Your baby was born with a grasping reflex, but they don’t yet know how to let go of things – which is why long-haired mums better be prepared for some painful moments. Around now you may notice them unclasping their fists and trying to wave them.  Other 2 month old baby developments  Drooling  They won’t yet be teething, but you might notice that your baby is starting to drool more (and making a bit of a mess!), as their salivary glands develop. Fear not though, their drool actually contains a lot of bacteria killing enzymes so it’s no bad thing to get it on their toys or other surfaces they’re interacting with.  Sleeping  You may find that your baby is beginning to sleep in more solid blocks (of 5 or 6 hours) but at 2 months old, it’s still very common for your baby to be waking up in the middle of the night.  Reading to your baby  They might not be able to follow along just yet, but reading to your baby can help to sooth them, whilst also helping them to become more familiar with your voice. Try varying the tone and intonation of your voice to keep them interested and build a better connection.  First Immunisations  When your baby is 2 months old you’ll be offered the first round of immunisations which includes protection against a range of diseases including: Rotavirus – A highly infectious virus that can cause gastroenteritis in your baby DTaP/IPV/Hib – Protects against diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, polio and haemophilus influenza Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (PCV) – This protects against pneumococcal infections including pneumonia, meningitis and bronchitis Six-week postnatal check  At around the 6 week mark, both you and your baby will be offered a post-natal check-up. This check up with b to make sure your baby is developing well and is healthy. In this check-up you can expect the nurse to weigh and measure your baby, check their development of hips, heart, genitals and eyes, and also ask you some questions about how they’re feeding.  How to help your baby develop in month two When you’re talking to your baby, give them time to respond to what you are saying with a look or babble. Research shows babies whose parents who allow them to respond  learn to talk earlier This is a great time to introduce a baby gym – they’ll try to bat at the hanging toys, but careful not to overdo it – a five to 10 minute session is enough, and don’t persevere if they cry. Leave it a week or two and try again Lots of mums get embarrassed about talking to their baby and don’t know what on earth to say. One way to get started is to keep up a kind of commentary on what you’re doing, a bit like a Victorian nanny, according to babycare expert Dr Miriam Stoppard. “They would say, ‘now, shall we put our coats on? Now, let’s go out for a walk. That’s right, into the pram we go.’ I think a child should hear words for much of the time they are awake. Babies have a window when they can learn speech, and it’s open from birth” Game of the month  Try playing different types of music and watch your baby kick their legs and listen with intense concentration. If you play a quieter tune you will see them visibly relax (some research says it may even send them to sleep. No promises.) Are they normal? A small note on developmental milestones: it’s really true – all babies are different and although we can encourage them, they will do things at their own pace and in their own time. content source

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Useful tips for designing your baby's nursery

Are you planning to decorate your baby's nursery but not sure where to start? You will be required to plan each and everything very meticulously with the arrival of a baby. As the better you plan, the more effectively you will be able to carry out your responsibilities. Here we offer you some vital tips to guide and inspire you for designing your baby's nursery- 1. Consider the room's location and other practicalities: If you have a choice, select a peaceful room closer to your bedroom so you don’t have to walk far at night. Make sure that a cold room has adequate heating and a warm room has good ventilation.  2. Incorporate the style of your house into the nursery décor: Is your interiors style traditional, contemporary or perhaps an eclectic mix? It’s important that your nursery design reflects your own personal style and how you’ve decorated the rest of your home. Otherwise, it will look out of place.  3. Create your own mood board: Search the internet and magazines for pictures you love and piece them together to create a mood board. This will help you to pick your colours, keep your ideas focused and pull your theme together.  4. Keep it simple: With all the gorgeous nursery furniture and accessories available, it’s easy to over-decorate. Keep it simple and decide on a single focus for the room early on, such as a piece of furniture or artwork. Think child-friendly, not childish. Choose a neutral background and mix in age-appropriate accessories and you’ll reduce the need to redecorate every few years.  5. Choose soft, tranquil colours: Consider using colours that are calming and nurturing. When your baby gets older she will tell you what she wants, so take this special time to consider what makes you feel relaxed. With the demands of a newborn, most mums need calm more than anything.  6. Choose adaptable décor: Consider how long the nursery décor will last your baby. Wall paper with characters might have to be changed in a few years if your child finds it babyish or out-of-date. Wall stickers are a cheap, easy alternative for decorating that can be removed when your child gets older.  7. Think about safety: Make sure that the cot is deep enough to be safe for your baby. The bars should be at the correct distance apart, and the cot must not have cut-outs or steps. Create a safe zone around the cot by positioning it away from windows, heaters, lamps, wall decorations and cords. Keep furniture that your baby could clamber on to away from the cot too.    Content source Featured image source 

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Growth spurts: What you need to know

From age 2 to 4, kids add about 2 to 3 inches in height per year and up to 4 pounds in weight. (From ages 1 to 3, growth takes place primarily in the legs and trunk.) Growth percentiles reveal your child's height and weight relative to other children of the same age and sex. For example, a child in the 75th percentile in height is taller than three-fourths of his peers. Growth is seldom steady and even. Instead, it tends to happen in spurts. Among the signs of a growth spurt in progress: Your child may seem hungrier than usual or eat more at a sitting. Your child may nap longer than usual or sleep longer at night. Your child may be crankier or clingier than usual even though he's not ill. It's probably a good idea not to put too much emphasis on growth spurts, however, in justifying behavioral changes over the long term. Typically, parents notice a child's growth spurt after it has already happened. You dress your child in the same pants he wore last week and they no longer reach his ankles, or his feet seem too big for his shoes. It's not uncommon for a young preschooler to grow two clothing sizes in a season. Responding to growth spurts You don't need to do much in response to a growth spurt, other than restock the closet. If your child seems to have a larger appetite than usual, feed her another serving at meals or provide more frequent snacks. Preschoolers often veer between "living on air" and vacuuming up food, depending on their body's needs. Let your child sleep longer for a few days if she seems to need it. What about growing pains? "Growing pains" – dull aches in the legs, especially around the calves, knees, and front of the thighs – are somewhat controversial and probably misnamed. No medical evidence links them to growing muscles or bones. It's possible, however, for growing muscles to feel tight and spasm after a lot of activity. As many as 25 to 40 percent of kids report this feeling, beginning around ages 3 to 5 (and then again in the tween years). Often the pain wakes a child up in the middle of the night. These pains tend to follow days of vigorous outside play. They can be treated with warm compresses, massage, gentle stretching, or acetaminophen. If the pain is severe or lasts more than 24 hours, report it to your child's doctor so he can rule out other causes, including juvenile arthritis, rheumatologic disorders, infection, fractures, and other orthopedic problems.   Content and Feature Image Source:

Is Your Child Really Ready for Preschool?

Every child develops at his own pace, so preschool readiness and social readiness can blossom at different rates. Some children are more than ready at 18 months, while other children need to be 3 or 4 years old before they pick up a mini-backpack or lunch box. As you ponder whether to start preschool, take the following into consideration:  Can your child work on his own for a brief period?  He should be able to focus and complete a puzzle, a drawing, or a block construction by himself without direct supervision or support from an adult.  Can he do basic self-care?  Most centers want kids toilet-trained or at least showing strong signs of readiness. (If a child is on the verge, the example of the other kids often works as a motivator.)  Can he participate in group activities?  While this is a skill he'll be developing in preschool, he has to be ready to start. He should be able to sit in circle time listening to the teacher and the other kids, and to follow stories and activities presented in a group.  Can she separate from you for a few hours at a time?  If your child accepts babysitters or goes readily to day care, there's a good chance she will be ready to separate for a preschool experience, although all children will need some support and time to adjust.  Can she manage a preschool schedule?  Preschools are busy places, usually with activities, a snack, outdoor play in the morning, and a quiet time or nap in the afternoon. If you have a child who is still a morning napper or has trouble with several activities in the morning, she may not be ready for preschool.    Content and Feature Image Source

Facts About Young Children / Pinterest

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How Nature can Benefit Children / Skipping Stones

Preschool Checklist / Pinterest

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4 Things your Child Should Know before Preschool / Rainbow Chimes

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How to Boost your Baby's Creativity / Pinterest

Is baby ready for solid foods? (Developmental signs of readiness)

What do the experts say? Health experts and breastfeeding experts agree that it’s best to wait until your baby is around six months old before offering solid foods. The American Academy of Pediatrics, the World Health Organization, and many other health organizations recommend that babies be exclusively breastfed (no cereal, juice or other foods) for the first 6 months of life.  I’m not going into the many health benefits of delaying solids here; see When Should Baby Start Solids? for more information. Developmental signs that baby is ready for solids Solids readiness depends on both the maturity of baby’s digestive tract and baby’s developmental readiness for solids. Although the maturity of baby’s digestive system is not something that we can readily observe, research indicates that 6 months appears to be ideal for avoiding increased illness and other health risks of too-early solids. After this point, different babies are ready for solids at different times — developmental readiness for solids cannot be determined using a calendar. Most babies are developmentally ready for solids somewhere between 6 and 8 months. . Signs that indicate baby is developmentally ready for solids include: Baby can sit up well without support. Baby has lost the tongue-thrust reflex and does not automatically push solids out of his mouth with his tongue. Baby is ready and willing to chew. Baby is developing a “pincer” grasp, where he picks up food or other objects between thumb and forefinger. Using the fingers and scraping the food into the palm of the hand (palmar grasp) does not substitute for pincer grasp development. Baby is eager to participate in mealtime and may try to grab food and put it in his mouth.  

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Four-weeks old baby: Health, growth, care and more

At 4 weeks, your baby is almost a month old and you've both gone through an enormous amount of change in a very short period of time. Before you do anything else, give yourself a pat on the back for making it this far and recognise all that you have accomplished since you met your little one. You’ve made it through sleepless nights, struggled through feedings, and learnt to do pretty much any task one-handed. But just like every new week so far, there’s plenty more in store for both of you! Here’s what you need to know about your 4-week-old baby. Developmental Milestones: Some babies will develop a little faster than others and some babies may need time to “catch up.” At 4 weeks old, your baby might be able to: Body Hold their head up for a few minutes Lift hands toward the face or mouth, but it won’t be long before they reach their mouth! Control more head movement, like turning the neck from side to side Make jerky, quivering arm thrusts Keep hands in tight fists Continue strong reflex movements Brain Recognize you, your partner, or family members with widened eyes  See more clearly, up to about 18 inches in front of them Listen intently when you speak or sing Start to coo May turn toward familiar sounds, including your voice. Hearing is fully developed at this stage. Study human faces Baby Care Basics: By four weeks, chances are you’ve become a diaper-changing pro! Whether you are using cloth diapers or disposable diapers, your little one may start experiencing a diaper rash from time to time, especially during the summer months. To help prevent and treat diaper rash: Change your baby’s diaper more frequently: As soon as you notice the diaper is wet or soiled during the day, change it.  Use a diaper rash cream: You can apply a diaper rash cream as a preventive measure, especially if your baby is prone to getting rashes.  Air it out: The best way to prevent and treat diaper rash is to let your baby go all-natural.    If your baby seems excessively uncomfortable, especially after a feeding, they may be experiencing gas. Try these helpful tips: Burp after feedings: Be sure to burp your baby from the bottom upward to facilitate the air movement. Switching formulas: Your infant may need to change formulas several times before finding one that works best for their digestive system. Change bottles: Bottles and nipples are all made differently, so it might be helpful to try several types of bottles and nipples that have different kinds of airflow to experiment with what reduces gas in your little one. Health & Safety At 4 weeks old, your baby will have another well-child check-up. At this visit, the pediatrician will evaluate your baby’s growth and development and go over important safety guidelines with you. You can expect to be asked about: Your home environment: If you smoke, you should quit to reduce the risk of SIDS and increase your baby’s health. No smoke or secondhand smoke should be around the baby. Car seat safety: At 4 weeks old, your infant should be in a rear-facing infant seat. Vaccines: The second dose of the Hepatitis B vaccine may also be administered at this visit. Content source Featured image source

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Games for newborn babies  

0-3 Month Old Games Motor Games and Activities Place baby on their tummy to play for a few minutes at a time, a few times a day Lie down and place baby tummy down on your chest so you’re face-to-face Hold baby’s hands and clap them together while you play music and sing Nestle baby close to you while you gently rock and sway Change the direction that baby sleeps to encourage head turning and build strength Sensory Games and Activities Hang a colorful mobile above baby’s crib to provide visual stimulation Gently touch and tickle baby to make them giggle Play with baby in a variety of positions Provide plenty of skin-to-skin contact with a parent or caregiver Smile at baby, touch her hands, feet and forehead. See how she wiggles, reacts to touch and voices Play or sing songs with baby to help enhance baby’s listening skills When changing baby’s diaper touch different body parts and say “beep” baby may begin watching your hand and anticipating touch. Hang a mirror on the wall. Tap the mirror and say baby’s name. Over time baby will begin to understand who the baby in the mirror is. Show baby family photos or flip through a magazine. Point out the smiling faces to baby Communication Games and Activities Speak in a high-pitched, sing-song voice to help get and keep baby’s attention while you talk Describe your actions as you dress, feed, and bathe your child. Talk about where you’re going and what you’re doing. Give baby frequent face-to-face time Shake a rattle up and down while singing to baby Show pictures of family and friends and point out smiling faces Hold up a doll or stuffed animal and point out the different body parts  Feeding Games and Activities   4-6 Month Old Games   Motor Games and Activities Place baby on their tummy to play in short spurts for up to an hour over the course of the day Place baby tummy down on a blanket and move the blanket slowly around the room Allow baby to explore age appropriate toys with their mouth and tongue (be sure that the toys are large enough so that baby does not risk choking) Encourage baby to practice repeated rolling from back to tummy. Place toys around to encourage pivoting Sensory Games and Activities Encourage baby to touch fabric with different textures such as wool, corduroy, and velvet Lift baby up and down and play in different positions to help develop their sense of movement and balance Find balls with different textures and colors. Teach baby how to roll, drop, and bounce them. Communication Games and Activities Play peek-a-boo Use a variety of facial expressions while you talk Read with baby. “Reading” can simply mean describing pictures without following the written words. Encourage two-way communication. When baby coos or babbles, be sure to respond and take turns in “conversation”. Play with rhymes and songs Encourage baby to play with toys that make sounds Feeding Games and Activities Collect a variety of scents (flowers, spices, cookies) and pass them under baby’s nose one at a time to see what kinds of smells they prefer 7-9 Month Old Games Motor Games and Activities Put a toy or book inside an empty cardboard box. Wrap it with colorful paper or newspaper comics. Clap your hands when baby yanks it open then announce what is inside. Encourage movement by placing toys around baby where they must move to reach them Encourage baby pushups during Tummy Time by raising and lowering a rattle over baby’s head Engage baby in activities like reading or playing with a ball while in sitting Gently push baby back and forth on a swing in the park, but make sure baby can sit up and hold head steady with no problem When baby is holding a toy in each hand offer a third toy; watch as baby figures out how to grasp the new toy without letting go of the other two Punch holes in lid of empty food container and fill with water to make a fun bath time toy Get an empty plastic bucket and have baby throw toys into it Use different household items , like squeeze toys or newspapers to make different noises for baby Sensory Games and Activities Use your hands to make shadow puppets for baby Gently touch baby on the feet and tummy to make them giggle Play with a jack in the box or windup toy with baby to show motion Use animal sounds when playing with or reading to baby; point out an image of an animal then associate the sound that animal makes with the picture Walk with baby in a carrier or baby backpack Play with baby in many different positions Take baby on a walk in a stroller or jogger Use slow, rocking motions for calming and more vigorous motions for play time Give baby space to explore environment, while staying close to supervise Introduce new textures while baby is eating, sleeping, dressing, or playing outdoors, use a variety of sponges, soaps, and lotions during bath time Provide plenty of skin-to-skin contact with a parent or caregiver Encourage baby to play on the floor with toys of various colors, sizes, and shapes Allow baby to grab and explore items within reach Communication Games and Activities Draw a picture of baby’s face and then point out the different parts Play with a pretend phone; talk into phone as you would a regular call, then offer it to baby to do the same Read short stories with baby Start using hand movements along with associated words to teach baby to communicate with gestures Describe your actions throughout the day as you dress, feed, and bathe baby. This gives baby an opportunity to listen to the sounds and rhythms of speech Respond to baby’s sounds and encourage two-way communication Play music throughout the day – lively, upbeat music during playtime, and quiet melodic music for naps and bedtime Read picture books together to help baby connect words and images Give baby frequent face time Point out objects while you walk and talk with baby Feeding Games and Activities Try introducing pureed foods to baby. Puree a small amount of whatever you are having for dinner in a food processor, but be sure to avoid honey, cow’s milk, salt, and artificial sweeteners Introduce new foods gradually and watch for baby’s response Do not force food or show stress over a baby’s dislike for certain foods Change the texture of food if baby refuses food Provide baby with a healthy diet – avoid artificial ingredients, sugars, and preservatives 10-12 Month Old Games Motor Games and Activities Get baby to stack toys such as blocks or rings and describe each toy as your baby picks it up Lie down on the floor and have baby crawl over you Practice new gestures with baby like blowing kisses, clapping hands, or giving a high five Use a toy to encourage baby to crawl when they are in a tummy time position Roll a soft ball across the floor and encourage baby to crawl after it Allow baby to play with toys they can push or pull across the floor Read with baby while they lie on their tummy Play with stackable blocks Let baby play with large objects like tunnels, pillows, or cushions while supervised If baby is already walking, let them try riding toys that they can sit on and scoot across the floor Provide push toys that allow baby to practice walking with some support Encourage baby to dance and sway to music Provide opportunities for baby to experience slow, rocking movements Sensory Games and Activities Play peek-a-boo with baby Have baby look at their reflection in the mirror and point out each body part Encourage baby to crawl over, under, and through various objects in your home Introduce baby to new textures through food, toys, clothes, sponges, etc. Provide plenty of skin-to-skin contact with caregivers Keep baby away from areas where people are smoking or using harsh chemicals Communication Games and Activities Practice waving bye-bye when a guest leaves your home Read daily from big, colorful books and let baby turn the pages Encourage baby to wave hello when meeting new people Ask baby to point to different body parts when you name them Ask baby questions and encourage response with words, baby sounds, cooing, or babbling. Record the conversation and play it back for baby to hear Direct baby’s attention to interesting objects by helping them point their finger Name textures, shapes, and sizes to help baby attach words to tactile experiences Describe your actions throughout the day as you dress, feed, and bathe baby Respond to baby’s sounds to encourage two-way communication Feeding Games and Activities Offer baby an assortment of food to try Keep track of where baby is in their feeding development, well meaning friends and family may give baby food inappropriate for their age  

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What can you expect your baby to be doing at four months old?

Your baby at four months old At four months old your baby's development will be speeding up. Along with improved senses, they will likely be going through the early stages of speech development and may even have the early signs of their first teeth.   Your baby’s senses at four months old Further development of their touch Your baby will be fascinated by anything with a texture now – crinkly, shiny, lumpy or furry. Most of the objects they touch, whatever their texture, will go straight in their mouth. Sometimes they will hit themselves in the face with the toy and cry, giving you a look as if to ask, ‘Why did you do that, Mum?’ What your baby can see Their vision has really come on since those first few fuzzy images at birth – your baby can now see across the room, although they will still prefer to look at things close-up. If you can see any squint, contact your health visitor as it’s important to get checked out. Although they can see colour from birth, your baby will now be much better at distinguishing between different shades, being able to more accurately work out the difference between similar shades. This can be a great time to introduce more colourful toys and books which they’ll love looking at. Your baby’s motor skills at four months old Speech development If you listen carefully to your baby’s babble you may be able to make out vowel and consonant sounds: p and b sounds when they’re unhappy and guttural sounds like j and k when they’re happy. They may also be able to imitate the sounds you make now, so if you say boo, they may try to say it back. Rolling on Rolling over is more likely now. The age at which babies first roll over varies – some are ready at three months, some not until six or seven months. So it may happen this month. Or it may not. You can’t force it but you can gently encourage it by putting a favourite toy by their side and see if they roll over to get it. You may also notice that whilst laying on their front, they’re able to arch their back. This is a good exercise that can help them develop their neck muscles further and is a good way for them to start developing the muscles they’ll need to sit up and eventually crawl, stand and walk.  

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8 Fun Indoor Activities To Play With Your Baby

It’s easy to get a little stir crazy when you and baby are stuck inside all day. Fear not—there are plenty of fun baby activities to keep your little one busy. The best part? Many of these interactive indoor activities for babies require a low lift from Mom and Dad. From sensory activities for infants to fun crafts projects, these are our favorite ways to keep infants busy. 1. SENSORY BAGS This idea is one of the best sensory activities for infants. All you need is a plastic bag, some water, tape and a sensory item of your choosing. The sensory bag lets baby discover things that are normally off-limits (think: hair gel, toothpaste, body lotion, etc.). Your curious infant will love squishing the different textures. Plus, by fastening the bag to a wall, it’ll encourage baby to practice reaching and balancing all on their own. 2. FABRIC FUN Want to keep baby engaged for good long while? Just grab an old wipe container and fill it with washcloths, bibs and other scraps of fabric. Not only will babies have a blast opening and closing the lid and pulling bits of fabric out, but they’ll also strengthen their tactile and fine motor skills as they discover different materials and their textures. This DIY toy idea is one of the most fun things to do with babies when you’re bunkered down inside. 3. RAINBOW RIBBONS Simple baby activities are the best way to keep your little one engaged. Grab a bunch of ribbons from your craft closet, cut them into strips and then hang them from baby’s play gym, a drying rack or anything you may have lying around the house. Your kid will build upper body strength and motor skills as they try to latch onto the ribbons. 4. BABY COLLAGE Another fun idea with the help of a few household items to encourage baby to crack into their creativity. Tape a piece of clear construction paper to a window and let your baby use it as a blank canvas to craft funky designs. Cut up scraps of tissue paper and show baby how they easily stay on the sticky surface. Your little one will follow your lead and keep busy all day. 5. STICKY SITUATIONS Once babies are past the six-month mark, they’ll want to grab and toss everything they set their sights on. One of the baby activities provides your little one with a toy ball you won’t mind them playing with. Using a plastic ball—the balls from blow-up ball pits work perfectly—grab some masking tape and wrap it up to create layers of sticky sensations for baby to grasp. The tape will stick to little hands, and youngsters will marvel at the makeup and material of the ball. 6. SPIDEY SENSES Every parent wants their kid to be problem-solver when they grow up. Grab a laundry basket and toss all those toys lying around your living room into it. Then weave yarn in, out, up and down, and now the baby will have to find a way around the spider web-like maze in order to get his toys back. 7. FIRE AND ICE When it comes to baby activities, simplicity is key. Introduce baby to the concepts of hot and cold. All it takes is two plastic bottles—one filled with ice and another with warm water. Place the baby on the floor, hand over the bottles and let them marvel at how two of the same objects can feel drastically different. Keep your baby busy, quiet and, most importantly, intrigued for nearly half an hour. 8. SHINE BRIGHT Everyday baby is discovering something new, which is why it doesn’t take much to tap into their curiosity. All it takes is for your phone to light up with a notification and it immediately has your little one’s attention. Find a small set of string lights and stuff them into a plastic jar. Hit the switch and watch as the container and your infant’s face light up. Your kid will be enthralled by the bright lights, and you can periodically switch it on and off to keep them on their toes. Content Source  Featured Image Source

Baby developmental milestones: 3 months

All babies have their own timetables. Little boys and girls simply grow and develop at their own rates, and on their own unique schedules. However, there are several common markers you can watch for. Celebrate with your baby as he reaches or nears the following key developmental milestones. May raise head and chest while on tummy: For your baby, holding up his head and chest while leaning on his elbows will be a major triumph. Hold a toy in front of your baby to encourage him to lift his head and look forward. This strengthens his neck muscles. Opens and shuts hands: Is your baby staring at her hands a lot these days? She's just discovered that she can open and shut them. Press a lightweight toy or rattle in her hand and she'll grip it, explore or shake it, and drop it when she loses interest. Pushes down on legs when feet are on a firm surface: Let your baby stand for a few seconds with some help from you. Hold him in a standing position with his feet on the floor and he'll push down and straighten his legs. Let him bounce a couple of times if he tries. May swipe at dangling objects and may grasp and shake hand toys: Your baby is learning hand-eye coordination. Lay her under an infant gym and she'll throw her whole body into batting and grabbing for the dangling toys. Hold a toy in front of her while she's sitting on your lap and let her try to reach for it. Can start to follow moving objects with eyes: Your baby's eyes can move and focus at the same time now. He may follow an object moving all the way around in a half-circle. He loves watching things move! Jiggle a mobile above his crib. Watching it will be a favourite activity. Recognises familiar objects and people at a distance: At birth, your baby could only see fuzzy shapes. Now she can recognize the outline of a face when someone enters the room. She even may smile at you from across the room! Take her out often in her stroller or baby carrier and let her discover all there is to see. May make cooing sounds and turns head towards some sounds: Is your baby cooing, aahing, and oohing? He's starting to imitate sounds, the first step to speech. Coo back to him and he'll begin to understand how two people talk. Sprinkle real words into talks with baby, too. He'll understand words long before he can say them. Content source Featured image source

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Best toys for 3-6-month-old babies

In the 3-6 month age range, your baby will begin to start playing with toys as he figures out what his hands, feet and voice can do. Toys during this phase need to be big enough that they cannot be put in the mouth since this is the age where everything finds its way to the child’s mouth. Be sure to check labels on all toys to ensure that they are appropriate for this age. Small parts and anything that can cause suffocation or strangulation should not be given to children from 3-6 months old. Check out the best toys for 3-6-months-old that can help your baby develop both his body and his mind. These are best toys for 3-6-month-olds:  1. Activity Center An activity center is a great toy for a child 3-6 months old since it provides a series of activities that your baby can use to begin to develop motor skills. Until your baby begins to sit up on his own, an activity center in the crib is a good option. Once the baby can sit up and wants to be more mobile, a free standing activity or one on a mat on the floor will be the best option. 2. Lightweight Rattles This is the age when a rattle becomes an interactive toy for your child. Until about the age of 3 months-old, your baby will react to you shaking a rattle. During the 3-6 month range, your developing child will reach for the rattle and begin to shake it himself. By this age, most babies are intrigued by anything that makes noise – as long as they are not startled by loud noises. A rattle or musical rattle will be a perfect toy. 3. Activity Bars An activity bar with hanging toys may be a perfect toy when your child is confined to a stroller or car seat. These toys allow your child to interact by hitting the toys and making noise if they contain rattles. Since these toys can be distracting for a tired baby, you may find that you want to reserve these toys for “awake” time. Baby’s crib may not be the right place for this toy. 4. Stuffed Animals A safe stuffed animal is one that a child can sleep with without having to worry about buttons that can come off or wires that can poke the baby. A perfect stuffed animal is one that is soft without ANYTHING that the child could remove and choke on. Remember, this is the age where your child will want to “taste” everything. 5. Bumbo As your 3-6 month-old learns to sit up, a Bumbo seat may be a perfect way for your child to be upright. These seats provide the stability your developing child needs and is a perfect size to take with you when you go visiting or when you go to a restaurant. Very light weight, the Bumbo will take up very little room in your car but should NOT be used as a car seat for a child of any age. 6. Musical Toys Musical toys are great at any age, but the 3-6 month-old range is when a child will really begin to understand that music can be enjoyable to make as well as listen to. Many age-appropriate musical toys that can be purchased including those that have built-in music and those require your child to do something to make the music. Either way, your child can begin to discover the joys of music during this time. Content source Featured image source

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