A question comes in every parent’s life and that is… How to entertain my baby?
As a new mom I was always thinking what activities to do with my baby. I was worried if the baby was entertained or bored and how to make things more exciting and interesting for the baby… With time I learned that sometimes the simpler things can be more entertaining that the games that I was inventing and preparing for. Here are some easy entertaining activities for 6-12 months old babies that you can do at home with stuff that is probably already there and available.
Pictures on the wall
Maybe this is an obvious one, but since my baby loves it so much I wanted to begin with it. Babies are curious and love seeing different pictures. Walk around the house and check the pictures on the walls whether they are posters, pictures of people or paintings. In time the baby will learn where the images are and would point direction to his or her favorite ones.
You can put a different twist by explaining body parts, colors, letters or people’s names.
Annie especially liked the pictures from her dad’s bachelor party. We have 8 separate pictures in frames on the wall with my husband and each of his friends that attended the party. We look at them pointing and saying the people’s names. Annie liked this so much that she brought me to the photos on her own and wanted me to repeat everyone’s name several times before moving to the next thing.
Magnets are my personal favorite! They are different in size, shape, material and color and just perfect to entertain your baby or toddler!
So it happens that we have an enormous collection of magnets from around the world 🙂 When Annie was several months old, we just gave her different magnets to hold, look at and put in her mouth. Then we held her to take them on her own. She now has her own set of child-proof magnets and arranges them at her discretion. She knows on which side she is supposed to put them, so that they would stay on the fridge. She also knows that they won’t stay on the kitchen cabinets, but only on the fridge.
Later on magnets can be used for sorting games – sort them by shape, for instance.
I imagine that magnets can be a lot of fun and educational for older kids. You can use them talking about different locations around the world and geography in general.
It’s unbelievable how much one can do with a bunch of straws! Not to mention, kids from all ages love them! Even if you don’t usually use straws, you can easily buy them from any store.
Put holes into a carton box (toy box, shoe box) and place one into each hole. You can cut the straws in two or three as they are long enough anyways. The first time I did this with Anna, she was about 9 months old and enjoyed it very much. She started removing the straws from the holes and when I put them back, she continued removing them as fast as possible.
With the baby developing, you can do more complex games with straws – removing them from one cup and putting them into another, put them into a bottle or any vessel with a narrow bottle neck, arranging them by colors, etc.
Most people do have curtains in their homes, right? Well, turns out that babies love them! There are many ways you can use curtains to entertain your baby.
Put some colorful curtains in the baby room, for instance. We chose orange curtains with pictures of elephants, bears and rabbits and some means of transportation. These are ideal to looks at and explain what is there or tell stories about the adventures of the animals. We even say “Good night” to them as part of Anna’s bedtime routine.
But you can do a lot of stuff with any curtains at home, not just the ones in the baby’s room. What Anna likes a lot since she was 6 months old is being in my arms and make a funnel of the curtain. I put the curtain around us and we move from left to right and then the opposite direction, touch the curtain, look through it if it allows, go to each side of the curtain, etc.
Also, you can hide behind the curtain, make the baby hide, play peekaboo using the curtain, hide other objects or surprises for the baby there.
Can you think of other easy ways to entertain babies? Let me know in the comments below, so I could try them 😉