If you’re a new parent, you know just how important it is to spend quality time with your baby. It’s especially important to have some games ready for when your child is ready to start learning about the world around them.
Play has many benefits beyond just being able to enjoy each other’s company, though. Interacting with others allows growing children to gain essential skills and properly develop their mental and physical abilities.
Here are some simple games for new parents and their babies that you can use to start having fun with your little ones as soon as possible.
Peek-a-boo is easy to play because it takes advantage of your child’s natural interest in the world around them. All you have to do is show yourself to your baby, letting them see your face, before hiding behind your hands or an object so they can no longer see you. Then, show them your face again and say “peek-a-boo” to make them laugh. Peek-a-boo is stimulating for babies, allowing them to develop their visual coordination and face recognition.
Pat-a-cake is a nursery rhyme usually accompanied by light hand movements, making it an excellent way for your baby to work on their coordination. Start by clapping your hands together and then high-fiving your baby with alternate hands while reciting the lines. Playing pat-a-cake with your child improves their motor skills, and if you’re rhyming while making the motions, it can also aid in language development.
Tummy time is a period set aside to lay babies on their stomachs so they can work on their motor skills and posture. While not necessarily a form of play, tummy time can be enjoyable for infants. Tummy time typically lasts for short periods of only a few minutes, but you can go for as long as the baby is happy. Be sure to work in some interactions that make it fun and motivate your baby to move around.
Another form of play that can be great for newborns is singing along. While singing to a baby can be a soothing experience, getting them to sing along with the words is great for their verbal development and provides another fun way to interact.
Some common nursery rhymes you can try include:
- Itsy-Bitsy Spider
- Mary Had a Little Lamb
- Hickory Dickory Dock
- Humpty Dumpty
- Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star
Most people grew up hearing these songs, and they’re easy to remember, making them a great choice for new parents.
Make the Most Out of Parenthood
Your infant will grow up fast, making playtime especially important. If you’re a new parent, knowing how to prepare your home and play with your baby can make life so much easier. Consider trying some of these games for new parents and their babies to improve your time together.