Toys for baby’s first year
The first year of a child’s life is unique in terms of the pace of development and acquisition of new skills. Big changes are taking place every day, even though you may not see them without looking at pictures taken over the course of those first precious months. As your child grows, they develop and gradually learn a series of new skills. It’s an amazing 52 weeks!
Playing with baby
What’s the best way to play with a baby? Babies need physical contact and enjoy being close to you. So it should come as no surprise when we say that the best gift for a child during those first 12 months is spending time and having fun with you. Though a parent is the best interactive toy for baby, we have ideas to support you as you engage in these educational and developmental activities. Patience and mindfulness are key during this stage. At one month, babies are just learning to raise their head while one-year-olds are starting to walk.
Be present and respond to your child’s needs. Make sure your child’s environment is safe. Even if your child is not rolling over or moving, that moment is coming, so stay alert! Talk to your child, sing and play quiet music. Show and talk about the objects that surround your child. This is how hearing and speech develop, although the effects of this work appear only later in the form of first words. Touch is essential: carry your child, take time to snuggle, give baby a massage and roll them over. You are not only supporting motor development, but also building intimacy, a special bond and a sense of security. Show your child various items and point out details; in time he or she will start to reach for them. This supports the development of sight, hand-eye coordination and grip.
Toys for the first 12 months
Choose toys that are safe and made of certified materials, with content and in a form that is age appropriate. Actually, a baby does not need much: rattles, teethers, hanging mobile devices and carousels where other toys or cards with pictures can be hung are perfect for babies. Babies and parents alike enjoy all kinds of educational mats.
One great way to spend time together is looking at contrast flash cards – this gives both sides an opportunity to cuddle, and provides baby with the closeness and sound of a parent’s voice he or she enjoys so much. Babies like looking at black and white patterns and these kinds of images help infants to focus their eyesight and attention. Placing a book or flash card in front of your baby on the floor provides great motivation for raising their head. Most importantly, it is also an opportunity for the parent to show and talk about the illustrations.
As your baby grows and starts to sit up, blocks, containers and vehicles are all great objects to introduce – they will help your child to perfect their ability to grip and manipulate objects. Once your child starts moving around, there will be even more room to show off.
Best gifts for 1-year-olds
Has it already been one year?! A child’s first year is incredibly important, full of milestones and amazing changes. Did you know that a one-year-old can see almost as well as an adult? If your child isn’t walking yet, that moment is fast approaching. A toddler is curious about the world and ready to discover it under the watchful eye of a parent or guardian. So … keep having fun together. Perfect gifts for a 1-year-old include building blocks, books, and sand and water toys. This is also a good time to introduce puzzles and shape sorters.