Games that promote your baby’s sense of touch are easy to play and important for your baby’s understanding of the world.
These games will make your baby more self-aware, help develop essential communication skills, and lead to a greater bond between parent and child. And better still, these games won’t cost you a cent.
Three to Six Months:
Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes
Touch different parts of your baby’s body. Tell them the names of each body part: their head, back, arms, hands, legs, and feet. For example, as you stroke their head, say, “This is your head.” Smile and be gentle. This will help your baby feel emotionally secure and is a great bonding game.
Touch the Box
Take a shoebox (or any small cardboard box) and glue different textured materials to each side. Make sure they are properly fixed. For example, a piece of furry material on one side, sandpaper on another, and silk on another side. Show your baby how to feel the different materials. Talk about how they feel. Are they rough or are they soft and smooth? This game will introduce your baby to new textures.
Six to Nine Months:
The Adventure Trail
Holding your baby, take a walk around the house, touching different objects and describing how they feel. Help your baby touch the objects. For example, touch the fridge and say, “The fridge is cold.” As well as discovering different textures and sensations, this will also improve your baby’s understanding of language.
The Monkey Game
Circle your finger on the palm of their hand and say, “Round and round the monkey goes, all around the tree, climbing higher and higher, wee, wee, wee.” Walk your fingers up their arm and tickle them under the chin. Your baby will love the sound of your voice as you play this game. This will also encourage your baby’s sense of anticipation.
Nine to 12 Months:
What’s In The Box?
Find a small box and put various objects inside. The objects should have different shapes and textures. For example, you could use various pieces of material, a furry toy, bubble wrap, and a plastic cup. Sit on the floor with your baby. Pick out an object and describe what it feels like. Let your baby touch it, then put it back into the box. Do the same with the other objects. This game will help improve tactile awareness and language skills.
This shopping game is similar to the adventure trail game, but it is more focused on store food items. You can make the trip to the supermarket much more fun. Let your baby touch and even smell each object before you put it into your shopping cart. Describe how each item feels. When you return home, they can experience the food textures again.
There is no need to spend lots of money on toys when your child is so young. Many household objects are interesting enough for young minds. These simple games will help with your child’s brain development and strengthen the bond you have with your baby. Why not try introducing your baby to more textures next time you play a game?