|

Playing with Your Baby

Your baby will love it if you take some time to play games with her in your lap. You don't need to do much. She will find these simple exercises endlessly entertaining:

  • Pull her up to sitting
  • Pull her up to standing
  • Hold her hands to help maintain her balance while standing (or sitting)
  • Help her do deep knee bends and "jumping"

Just bouncing your baby up and down on your knee will no doubt delight her. In the coming months, she will enjoy nursery rhyme variations on bouncing. (You can find delightful bouncing rhymes in any good nursery book of rhymes or play rhymes. Ask your local children's librarian to point you in the right direction.) Start with a basic rhythmical bounce: "Ride a Cock Horse to Banbury Cross." Then vary speeds with "This Is the Way the Gentleman Rides." Finally, you can move on to "Trot Along to Boston," with its surprise ending (opening up your legs and letting your baby "fall" through-but don't let go of her hands).

Give Your Baby the Floor

Q-tip

You can help your baby learn how to roll (if he hasn't already started on his own). When he's lying on his back on the floor, take a knee in your hand and cross it over the other knee. After you've helped him flip the bottom half of his body, all he needs to do is flip his hips and his shoulders will follow. Support his hips in your hands and then gently rock them back and forth until you've built enough "momentum" to flip him over onto his belly. Pretty soon, he won't even need you to get him started anymore.

Floor time gives your baby a chance to develop and practice new skills such as rolling over, getting on his hands and knees, and sitting up. Make sure that the floor or ground is soft enough so that he won't hurt himself when he plops down face first. Putting your baby down on a quilt or a thick blanket can soften a hard floor or tightly packed earth.

If it's warm enough (indoors or out), you can also start giving your baby a regular dose of naked time. By three or four months, your child will probably begin to enjoy the sensual experience of letting it all hang out. In addition to stimulating all of his senses, naked time also gives your baby total freedom of movement, unencumbered by one-piece outfits and bulky diapers.

When your baby can sit up by himself for more than a minute or so, try rolling a big, colorful ball to him. At first (assuming you have reasonably good aim), your baby's body will just stop the ball without any active intervention on his part. But before long, your child will start anticipating and reaching out to stop the ball with his hands. Encourage him to roll the ball back to you. When he does, you'll have a real game going.



More on: Babies

|

Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Bringing Up Baby © 1997 by Kevin Osborn. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit the Idiot's Guide web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


highlights

Teens and E-Cigarettes: 6 Things You Must Know
For the first time in a generation, tobacco use has risen among the nation's youth, due to the rising use of e-cigarettes. Learn more about the dangerous and addictive e-cigarette trend, and get tips to talk to your teen.

Find Today's Newest & Best Children's Books!
Looking for newly released books for your child? Try our new Book Finder tool to search for new books by age, type, and theme, brought to you by Galactic Hot Dogs.

Printable Lists of the Top 100 Baby Names
Need help with baby name ideas? Use our printable list of the top 100 girl names and top 100 boy names of 2015 to help you brainstorm and narrow down your favorites.

Registered for Kindergarten — Now What?
Wondering what to do now that you've signed your child up for kindergarten? Try our award-winning Kindergarten Readiness app! This easy-to-use checklist comes with games and activities to help your child build essential skills for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Facebook icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks