Infant Play Activities That Stimulate Sensory Development

Below you will find a great list of infant play activities you could, and should engage your baby in on a daily basis. Sensory activities, geared to infant stimulation, will provide a way for you ensure proper sensory stimulation and development. These are valuable sensory activities for infants and toddlers that are simple, practical, and necessary.

Most of you probably do many of these infant play activities for sensory stimulation naturally. If so, thank you! If you don't I hope this gives you some basic ideas and stirs in you both creativity and commitment to providing the essential sensory stimulation for your precious babies. If you make sure these infant play activities are included in their repertoire, then your child will be off to a great start!

Infant Play Activities

  • Hold and sing to young babies. Even when babies are able to hold their own bottle, they should be held. Being cuddled frequently assists to build the child's self-worth, security, and tactile system. Propping an infant with a bottle is a choking hazard.

  • Rock, sway, and swing your baby gently to help them develop a sense of movement and balance (vestibular system).

  • Talk to your infant and echo their babble. They may not be able to understand you now, but will learn words for the foundation of their speech later on.

  • Take your infant play activities outside on nice days.

  • Explain to them what you are doing throughout the day when you change them or feed them. Babies feel secure when their cries are responded to. When you provide them with the sense of security, they are willing to explore and try new things.

  • Be consistent so they know what to expect. Babies have their own schedule for eating, sleeping, and diaper changes. This may not be the same as another child's.

  • Play different kinds of music such as classical, soft rock, and children's folk music.

  • For newborns, use contrasting toys, such as black, white, and red. These are easier for them to see. As the child gets older, place bright toys near them.

  • Give them soft toys (a stuffed animal or soft rattle) to hold, grasp, and feel.

  • Give babies toys they can make noise with.

  • Provide children with the opportunity to experience various smells. This may include lemon, vanilla, apple juice, or natural smells such as grass or flowers.

  • Hang up big pictures of people (can include their family members) and animals on the wall at their eye level.

  • Hang toys up that you make yourself for babies to see and hear. You can hang aluminum pie plates on a string from the ceiling. Let the breeze blow them or move them with their hands.

  • Have a clean space for babies to crawl. Put bright toys near them so they can reach out for them or move toward them. Spending too much time in various child devices can delay gross motor milestones since they have not had the experience to develop their muscles and learn earlier skills.

  • Put a big cardboard box on the floor so the babies can crawl inside and play.

  • Put some chair cushions on the floor so the babies can roll and bounce on them. Make sure the child is able to roll and has decent head control to avoid a situation in which they will get "stuck" and have trouble breathing.

  • Read books aloud to them that have bright colorful pages. They will respond to the rhythm in your voice. Over time they will comprehend that these words have meanings and be able to identify objects.

  • Let the child practice with a spoon between 4-12 months. It will be messy, and they may not know what to do with it, but they need the practice.

  • Remember that infants put everything in their mouths, so wash toys frequently and be sure toys are large enough that the child is not able to swallow it. Babies should not play with anything less that the size of a half-dollar (1-1/4 inch).

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    Further Reading

    Sensory Stimulation For Infants, Babies, And Toddlers

    Click Here For More Information On, And Suggestions For, Sensory Toys

    Want To Know If Your Infant/Baby/Toddler Is Developing Properly? Click Here

    Click Here For Fine Motor Activity Ideas For Your Infant/Toddler

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