Birth to 3 months
Shadow puppet display- sit in a darkened room and use a torch to shine on the wall. See if baby follows the light. Use your hand to cast shapes and shadows of animals on the wall. Help baby have a go with their hand or silhouette.
What’s that sound?- Introduce new and unusual sounds. Try scrunching up greaseproof paper and shiny cellophane (under close supervision of course), shaking a rattle, hitting homemade drums with wooden spoons (ice cream tubs or plastic bowls work well). Go in the garden and listen to a wind-chime on a windy day.
Eye-tracking games – Waggle and wave a floaty ribbon streamer around and move it in different ways so their eyes can track the different movements (never leave baby alone with one of these as the ribbons may get stuck around their neck or in their mouth). Also, try throwing a floaty piece of fabric or a chiffon scarf up in the air and let it fall down gently on baby.
Peekaboo/Boo- Mummy or Daddy hide behind a piece of fabric or cushion and pop up saying “BOO!” This is how we got Little One’s first giggles!
Mirror, mirror on the wall – Initially babies will see their reflection but not know it is their own face they are looking at. Ever since Little One was tiny, we have shown him his reflection in the mirror every morning when he wakes up. Make silly faces in the mirror for them to look at. Little One also has a baby-safe cot mirror which he can look at and it plays jungle-themed tunes. This cot mirror is by Bright Sparks available from Amazon: Singing Safari Cot Mirror
Silly hats – Put silly objects on your head and dance around in front of baby. Tell them what you’ve got on your head and ask them if you look silly!
Secret whispers – The idea of this game is to help babies understand that they can hear out of both ears. Lay baby down. Using the inside of an old toilet roll, place it near to one ear and very gently whisper something to your baby down the toilet roll. Then do the same near the other ear. This game works well on the change table at nappy change time.
Pom-Poms – Using a cheerleader pom-pom, move it up and down to the beat of some up-beat music in front of baby. Also try hiding it behind you and then revealing the pom-pom, swaying the pom-pom in circular motion and tickling their head with it.