It is a world full of excitement for your baby. During the first year of her life, she will develop quickly into her own personality. And while there are lots of toys for babies this age, she will need your company and love the most. Play with her to help her develop her motor skills and at the same time, keep her safe from harm while she explores the world around her.
The first 2 months
The human face may just be the ideal “toy” for your baby at this age. She enjoys watching and listening to you. Make faces with varying emotions – sad, happy, worried, grumpy, surprised or silly – at your baby and talk to her with matching tones at the same time. At two months, you may want to stimulate her vision with a black and white mobile toy suspended over her baby cot too.
3 to 5 months
By now, your baby will have started grabbing things. Let her hold on to something non-breakable, washable and light. A large plastic key chain is an ideal “toy” here. Put it slightly out of her reach – but not too far so that you do not frustrate her. She will reach for it.
You can also try some floor play. Put your baby tummy-down on the floor and lie down yourself facing her. She will work her neck and arm muscles to lift up her head to face you.
6 to 8 months
Being able to sit up by herself now, your baby can engage in more games: rolling and throwing a ball, putting items in and out of a box and splashing happily in a bathtub (with you next to her, of course).
She now begins to understand the concept of object permanence. She will know that a toy that disappears may reappear. Play games like peekaboo and “now you see it, now you don’t”. This helps her maintain mental images, a skill crucial in every child’s development.
9 months to 1 year
Your baby is learning to walk now and there is just so much to explore! Pots and pans, plastic containers, mommy’s makeup bag or daddy’s leather belt … any non-breakable item becomes a “toy”. At the toy store, go for toy phones, large balls and simple activity toys with knobs, doors, switches and buttons. Your baby will be thrilled! Beware of toys with strings, small parts and toys that are breakable.
|WHAT IS IN A TOY?|
Do not spend too much money on toys at this age. To your baby, everything is a toy. In fact, she may find the box that the toy arrives in to be more fascinating than the toy itself! In all cases, the most important thing is to ensure that all “toys” are safe and have no small parts that your baby can accidentally swallow.