Thursday, February 19, 2009

Baby and Toddler Activities, cont'd

Continuing the baby/toddler activities series that I received from our county. These are not my ideas, and, of course, may not be appropriate for all babies. Please use care when trying any new activity with your child, taking into consideration their own abilities and temperaments. All activities should be properly supervised. Follow all safety guidelines.

Activities for Infants 8-12 Months Old
  • Let baby play with plastic measuring cups, cups with handles, strainers, and sponges that float in the bathtub. Bath time is a great learning time.
  • Say "Hi" and wave when entering room with baby. Encourage baby to imitate. Help baby wave "Hi" and "Bye" to others.
  • Let baby pat and poke at self in mirror. Smile and make faces together in the mirror.
  • Let baby put objects in and out of containers. Give baby plastic containers with blocks. Baby may enjoy putting socks in an out of the sock drawer, or small cartons (jello, pudding) on and off shelves.
  • Let baby feed her or himself. This gives baby practice picking up small objects (cereal, peas). This also gives experience with textures in hands and mouth.
  • Give baby blocks to bang, rattles to shake, or wooden spoons to bang on containers. Show baby how to bang objects together.
  • Baby will start making sounds like la-la and da-da. Copy the sounds baby makes. Add a new one and see if baby tries it too.
  • Make a simple puzzle. Put blocks or ping-pong balls inside a muffin pan or egg carton.
  • Let baby make choices. Offer two toys or foods and see which baby picks. Encourage baby to reach or point to chosen objects. Babies have likes and dislikes!
  • Dance to music together.
  • Read books or colorful magazines. Point and tell baby about the pictures. Let baby pat pictures in the book.
  • Play hide and seek games. Let baby see you hide an object under a blanket, diaper, or pillow. If baby doesn't uncover the object, just cover part of it. Help baby find the object.
  • Baby will start using index fingers to poke. Let baby poke at play phone or busy box. Baby may want to poke at face parts as baby touches your face.
  • Play pat-a-cake. Clap hands together or take turns. Stop. Wait and see if baby wants you to start the game again. Try the game using blocks or spoons to clap and bang with.
  • Put toys on sofa or table. Baby can practice standing while playing with toys.
  • Play ball games. Roll ball to baby. Help baby or have another partner help baby roll the ball back to you. Baby may even throw ball. A ball that is soft will work best.
  • Play imitation games like "peek-a-boo" and "so big." Show pleasure at baby's imitations of movements and sounds. Babies enjoy playing the same game over and over.
  • Cut a round hole in the plastic lid of a coffee can. Give baby wooden clothes pins or ping-pong balls to drop inside.

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