Playing creates laughter and makes a good bonding experience for parent and child. It imparts knowledge and value, making the world around us more interesting. But figuring out how to engage with a newborn and how to interact with a toddler takes some effort from our end. Fret not as we compile a list of simple yet fun activities for babies and kids from birth to age two.
NEWBORN – 3 MONTHS
Tap tiny feet
Place your baby on his back on a playmat and tap the bottom of your baby’s feet gently to the rhythm of a song you are singing. We like Row Row Row Your Boat and Old MacDonald.
Fold a bedsheet in half, lay it on the ground and place your baby in the middle. Have another adult hold the other end, and swing baby gently and slowly. Sing a lullaby as you swing and watch baby’s reaction.
Fly baby fly!
Sit face-to-face with your baby. Support him by holding him under his arms. Tell your baby, “Let’s fly! Are you ready? Here we go. One, two, three, here we goooo!” As you do that, stretch out your arms and roll back until you are lying flat on your back with your baby above you.
Go for a walk
Try taking your little one on a walk every morning or evening. He will enjoy seeing the world around him. Talk to him and tell him all of the things he sees.
Hide your baby’s favourite toy in a room of the house and carry your baby from room to room saying “Where’s teddy? Is it in the bedroom?” and keep looking until you find it.
Cause and effect
Cut a medium-size hole in the plastic lid of a can and give your baby a few small toys to push into the hole. Remove the lid, take out the toys and repeat.
Fill a low, wide container with ¼ water and place it on the ground. Float small objects such as bath toys, leaves or corks in the water and let your baby reach and splash. Remember to supervise.
Let your baby explore the clothes in the laundry basket. Ball up a sock and play catch. Or place him inside the basket and soom him around the room on the floor.
Stack and nest
Have your child build towers from plastic cups or boxes of varying sizes inside each other.
Look at books
Instead of trying to read the entire story, let your baby hold and flip the pages of a book. Follow his lead; point at the pictures and tell him the names.
Play dress-ups with your child by providing a full-length mirror and an assortment of old clothes such as shirts, hats, belts, scarves, socks and shoes.
It’s never too old to help! If you are cleaning the house, get your toddler’s help. Give him a rag and see what he does. You can also get his help in dusting, putting away the toys, sweeping and vacuuming.
Choose an attractive picture from a magazine and stick it onto a piece of cardboard. Cut the picture into a few pieces. Help your child to put the pieces back together again to make the picture.
Tear and tear
Give a construction paper to your child and show her how to tear it. Glue it back together.