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Play & learning

Play is an important part of babies' development and can give you fun time together.

Play and movement help baby develop a sense of balance, learn about their body and develop strong back and tummy muscles.

Babies learn by listening to words and sounds and love time playing with you. Active movement also helps baby with their development.

Play / Te takaro

Some play ideas are to let your baby:

  • listen to you talk, sing and read stories
  • look at toys hanging above them
  • look at things inside and outside the home
  • feel different objects
  • hear music
  • hold rattles
  • spend time around other babies.

Active movement / Nekeneke oi

Some activities that encourage active movement are letting your baby:

  • spend time stretching and kicking on the floor - but make sure the floor is safe and keep small items and hot drinks out of reach
  • touch different things with their hands and feet - a feather or a ball are good objects for this
  • lie on the floor on their tummy when awake (your baby is safest on their back when asleep).

This position helps strengthen their neck and back muscles. It also helps to prevent or reduce flattening to the back of your baby’s head.

You can also:

  • spin around slowly in both directions with your baby in your arms
  • hold your baby and slowly move them up and down and around to music
  • rock forwards and backwards gently with your baby in your arms
  • lie your baby on their back and lifting their legs, one at a time.
An interesting link from Plunket
Here’s something I read on the Plunket website I thought you might find interesting.
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