Babies start learning how to connect with others early in life. They get to know the voices and faces of those who care for them. Your baby is fascinated with your face. Lots of face-to-face contact will encourage your baby to imitate your movements and expressions. Here are some simple games and activities that can help your baby learn to understand emotions, faces and the joys of communicating with others.
- Play Peek-a-boo. Swipe your hand slowly over your face to reveal different expressions – happy, sad, or surprised. Introduce words to accompany these expressions. “Oh, Mommy is sad, so sad…. (Swipe your hand)…surprise! Now Mommy is happy! “
- Babbling. Look in your baby’s eyes and talk to him. Repeat his coos and goos, and then wait for him to answer. These are your baby’s first conversations.
- Sing nursery rhymes and songs. Play lap games. Bounce baby gently to the beat as you look in her eyes and sing.
- Read together. Your baby is never too young to enjoy a story.
- Include baby is your daily chores. Talk to her as you sort through the laundry (“Oh those are some smelly socks!”) and while you cook and clean. She may not understand everything you are saying, but she will hear new words and pick up the different tones in your voice.
Look for a parent –baby group where your baby can see lots of other babies and watch you talk to other parents and babies.