Babies love to play games and seem to have an inexhaustible supply of patience for playing the same thing over and over again. So harness their enthusiasm and get playing.
Here are our favourite baby games to play
This one always has little ones chuckling. Hide behind something – a book, a muslin, a door, even a cardboard box. Wait a few seconds and then suddenly peep out at your baby, give a big smile and say “peek-a-boo!”
Soon your baby will be waiting for you to go back into your hiding place and laughing even before you pop out again!
“Heads, shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes
Heads, shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes
And eyes and ears and mouth and nose
Heads, shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes”
Even if your singing voice isn't the best, this neat little song is great for teaching your baby about the parts of the body. Start with your baby lying on your lap, in a bouncing chair or on the bed with you, gently touch their head as you start to sing, then move each hand to the next parts as you continue the rhyme.
Taking your child’s hand or foot, begin to trace a circle on the palm of the hand or sole of the foot and then say:
“Round and round the garden
Goes the teddy bear
Tickle you under there!”
From the hand or foot, you walk your fingers up their arm or leg and tickle your baby under the armpit. Guaranteed giggles all round!
This one works best with babies who can sit on their own for a short time... Simply take some blocks, building bricks, pots or cups and stack them one on top of the other.
Count as you go - five is probably plenty. And then you say: “And…bash it all down!” and knock the pile over as you do so.
Encourage your baby as he grows to help you pile up the items and count with you.
This is a rhyme you say whilst making movements with your hands to amuse your baby.
“Incey Wincy spider
Climbed the water spout
Down came the rain
And washed poor spider out
Out came the sunshine
And dried up all the rain
And incywincy spider
Climbed the spout again.”
There’s nothing as much fun as a song that has animal noises in which will cause both you and your baby to chortle.
“Old MacDonald had a farm
And on that farm he had a dog
With a woof-woof here
and a woof-woof there
here a woof
there a woof
everywhere a woof-woof
Old MacDonald had a farm
Another favourite classic baby game; there can’t be many adults whose toes weren’t pulled in this game!
“This little piggy went to market
This little piggy stayed at home
This little piggy had roast beef
This little piggy had none
And This little piggy went – wee, wee, wee, all the way home.”
This is played with your little one's bare toes and is great before you bath your baby.
A very simple game is rolling a ball to your baby and encouraging him to roll it back to you. Sit your baby on the floor, perhaps supported by a cushion, then roll a large, soft ball towards them. At first they won’t be able to do much with it but eventually, he will stop it with a hand and send it back to you.