Playtime for Your New Baby
It isn't all just sleeping and feeding – new babies can enjoy playing with you, too!
It might seem as if the early months aren't about a great deal except feeding and sleeping, but from day one you can 'play' with your baby, communicating and creating a vital bond as well as giving him a sense of fun and enjoyment in your company. Spending some time stimulating your baby's development doesn't have to be hard work. Talking, singing, rocking him back and for whilst looking into his eyes, reading and allowing him to explore textures (including playing with your hands, your clothes and first toys) can all build an exciting and playful environment for him in his earliest days.
Getting to know your baby
You would be amazed what kinds of communication goes on between your baby, you and his surroundings in the earliest weeks. For more background, go to the following links:
One month old
Two months old
Three months old
You can also encourage language development from the earliest days and whilst your baby will babble back for many months before any words even begin to half-form, this two-way communication is extremely valuable.
Having fun with your new baby
Getting used to the idea that this new person is not a china doll who must be crept silently around is so important. It will give you more confidence with your new baby and encourage him to enjoy the physical surrounds of his new world.
Baby massage Baby massage is a wonderful way to encourage your baby's physical development and it is great fun for you, too. Many towns have baby massage sessions now which will allow you to get to grips with safely massaging your baby and also give you something social to get involved with. Taking your baby to the swings is many months away, but being able to do baby massage (safe from about 10 weeks in most babies' cases), is a wonderful early parenting experience.
At home you can get your baby playing (preferably on his front rather than his back). There are many different companies who make wonderful first baby toys and you will also begin to instinctively know what your child likes – even it it's just the cold, smooth feel of your kitchen pots and pans or the snuggly sensations of playing with clothes from the laundry basket!
It is also never too early to start reading to your baby, even if you are just talking about pictures in a book or magazine.
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