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Activities to do with 4-6 months old

Congratulations on crossing the 3 month milestone with your baby. The best of the time elders get to spend with their children is when they are young. So make the maximum out of it. 

At this stage, while your baby is still in the eat - poop - play - sleep and repeat mode, you will observe a slight drop in the number of hours he sleeps. He will be more curious to explore his surroundings.

What to expect from a 4-6 months old?

  • Holds head steadily. Most of the kids will get head control by the end of 3 months. However, there can be exceptions to this.  
  • Rolls side-to-side 
  • Tries to imitate facial expressions
  • Reaches out and grasps objects
  • Recognizes people. Puts a face to a voice.

How to play with him?

There are many simple ways to engage your little munchkin, that helps in the development his of physical, cognitive and emotional well being. Most of the time, we perform many activities most naturally without even knowing that they simulate the cognitive, language, motor, social and emotional development in children. Let us check out few activities to engage infants when they cross 3 months.

Play peekaboo

An age old play that never gets outdated. Isn't it? Babies at this stage recognize voices and associate them with faces. Just cover your face and uncover, making sounds like peekaboo or boo-chi-boo... You may even hide his favourite toy with a cloth and expose it, in a similar manner. Babies love this and will respond with lots of smiles and coos.

Musical Toys

Baby will enjoy hearing a variety of sounds and responds to them. Try whistling and singing to her, place musical toys like a monkey playing drum or a duck dancing to tunes or wrist rattles (which can be wrapped on the baby's wrists). They will be soft on the skin and makes sounds when she moves. This is the same reason, why elders make the newborns wear anklets with small beads. Whenever they move, those metallic sound attracts the kid and helps in their sensory development.

Talk, sing and listen

Babies can hear from a very early stage, even before they are born (i.e., from 18 weeks of pregnancy). However, the sounds will be unclear as if heard when we are under water. I recently read an article which says, babies can relate to a language just weeks after they are born and can differentiate between languages. So start talking to them early on. My husband used to ask me why I talk to my baby as if I talk to an elder. But honestly that helps in their speech development. You will be surprised to observe them respond back. So talk, talk and talk. Explain your baby what you are doing, what he is seeing and listening - whether it is feeding him, bathing him, massaging him, cooking food, folding clothes, doing your office work etc. At the same time, listen to his responses, even if he just babbles. This gives him the assurance that he has audience and gains confidence to open up.  

Introduce different textures

As babies like to explore at this stage, introduce him to touch and feel different objects like satin cloth, feathers, hard bound books, spoons, strainers, balls, sun glasses etc. But ensure you stay by his side all the time, so that he doesn't accidently put them into his mouth or hurt himself. This activity encourages the kid to choose, investigate and grab things.

Encourage crawling

We saw many benefits of tummy time in my previous post. During tummy time, you may place colourful objects like rattles, toys, boxes, bright clothes etc. out of reach. This encourages her to move her body to reach them. Sooner or later, she will pick up the skill to crawl and get there.  

Practice rolling

Naturally, babies start to roll over around 5 to 6 months. To help gain her confidence, place her on a blanket/ mat and gently try to lift the blanket from one side, enabling her to slowly roll over to the other side. Practicing this a few times, gives her the confidence to try it on own. If your baby shows slightest discomfort, do not overdo. Patience is the key. If not today, she will eventually do it.

Teach to sit

Babies take time to balance their bodies on their bottom. Once he has gained control of his neck, you may slowly try to make him sit for a minute or two. Hold him well and cushion with pillows all around to enable him to sit. Again, don't rush. Take it slow.

Get outdoors

Take short trips together, daily. Sometimes to the park or mall or beach and introduce your little one to different places. Those sights and noises will astonish and stimulate her.

Play with nature

Don't underestimate the impact of nature on a child's early development. Take them outside the home for a daily walk, in the morning and evening, however short it might be. They will enjoy watching the birds chirping and flying, clouds moving, tall trees, waving branches, colourful flowers and their pleasant fragrance. As you show him a crow, dog, cat etc. imitate the sounds they make (caw-caw, woof-woof, meow-meow etc.). By this you are introducing animals and their language to your little one, along with the art of imitating.  

These are few simple activities that we can do with your baby. You can continue to follow the activities detailed in my previous post on how to entertain a newborn. Your baby will still enjoy doing them. Besides all these, pamper your munchkin with lots of cuddles, kisses and snuggles. Caring touch is the most powerful form of communication, which constantly assures them that they are loved and cared. 

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