Baby’s Fun Activities Month by Month
1. Fun Activities of 2-Month Baby
Your baby is beginning to know your voice, and likes to look into your eyes when you talk. Why not make a game out of it?
- Put baby on your lap, facing you, with her face about 8 to 12 inches away from yours. Lean toward her and talk happily. Pause, and give her a chance to smile, gurgle, wriggle or move her mouth back at you!
- Try doing these things one at a time: smile, stick out your tongue, open and close your mouth or eyes widely, or shake your head back and forth while you talk. Watch closely. What does your baby do? Does she smile, gurgle, wiggle?
- Give her time to respond. She doesn’t have full control of her body yet. If she turns away, give her time to turn back to you. She just needs to take a break. If she makes a sound, repeat it. She will be thrilled. In a few months, she will babble back when you talk to her, just like a real conversation. Taking turns like this helps your baby learn to talk.
- Music played regularly, but not all the time or too loud.
- A bell sewn securely to baby’s sock.
- Singing to baby, and telling her nursery rhymes.
- Wind chimes or a mobile hung in baby’s room.
2. Fun Activities of 3-Month Baby
Babies love to be with people, and games are a good way to have fun and learn at the same time. Brothers and sisters can play these games, too.
- Show baby you’re really interested in the game. Open your eyes wide, look surprised, smile, talk excitedly.
- Move baby’s arms and legs in rhythm with the game, fast to get her excited, slow if she gets too overworked.
- Reward her with lots of praise, smiles, and gentle touching.
- Talk while you play. Baby understands your tone, even though she doesn’t understand words. Naming things baby sees helps her learn that words stand for things.
- If baby can’t see something, she doesn’t know it’s still there! For example, hide your face behind your hands and say, “Where’s Mama (or Papa)?” Then take your hands away and say, “Peek-a-boo!”
- Play peek-a-boo by hiding baby’s face very briefly with a washcloth, or with a shirt when you’re dressing her.
- You can play this game with a rattle or any baby toy. Hold the toy in front of her, and move it gently to get her attention. Then, try to keep her eyes on it while you slowly move it from side to side, up and down, and in circles.
- Try holding the rattle off to one side and shaking it. Does she look to find where the sound comes from? She soon will.
- If baby’s attention starts to wander, it’s time to stop.
3. Fun Activities of 4-Month Baby
One way to have fun together is to have a daily exercise time. There may be books on exercises for baby in your public library. Here are a couple of examples to try.
- Pull to sitting ~ Lay baby on her back on a blanket or rug, and hold both of her hands. Slowly pull baby up until she is sitting. To encourage her, you can say things like, “Up we go!”
- At first, you may do more of the work. But baby will get the idea, and may soon work hard to help herself up.
- Rolling over ~ Lay baby on her back on a blanket and sit behind her head, holding a toy. Squeaky toys work well for this. Hold the toy where baby can see it. Slowly move it so baby has to turn her head to follow it.
- Praise baby if she arches her back and starts to turn. If she turns with her shoulders but her legs aren’t following, gently push on her bottom to help her over. Save this game for a later time if baby doesn’t try at all.
- Later, you’ll be able to help baby practice crawling.
4. Fun Activities of 5-Month Baby
As your baby reaches 5 and 6 months, watch how he reacts when things disappear from view. Does baby lean over to look for things he dropped? Does baby put a toy down and go right back to it later? These are signs that baby’s memory is growing. When he was younger, things were “out of sight, out of mind.” Now, he is learning that things exist even when not in sight. You can have fun with your baby, and help his memory:
Show baby a toy, then cover it — slowly at first — with a cloth or cup. Does your infant try to pull the cover off? What if you cover only part of the toy? Try different toys, and different covers. Play peek-a-boo to help baby learn that you come back when you go away. Sometimes cover your face, and sometimes cover his. If your baby doesn’t play these games now, wait a few weeks and try again.
5. Fun Activities of 6-Month Baby
When you are around town, you will meet other parents with their babies. Notice how much the babies like to look at each other? Babies really like other babies. Make a date to meet another parent and baby at the park or at your home. Make it a fun time. See what the babies will do with each other. It’s great to watch another parent and baby together. You can learn a lot just by watching, and they learn from you. Sometimes it’s just fun to laugh together about the good times and the hard times with a baby!
6. Fun Activities of 7-Month Baby
Has your child learned to blow air? Does baby use his tongue on the roof of his mouth to make clicking sounds? These are two important tricks for learning to speak. If you make a game out of blowing air and clicking your tongue, your child will try to imitate you. Put a small ball on baby’s high-chair tray. Blow on the ball until it rolls toward him. See if your baby blows it back to you.
Now is also a good time to play the “touch and name” game. Touch different parts of your baby’s body and name them: “This is Billy’s foot. Here is Billy’s nose. Where are Billy’s fingers?” Touch parts of your own or your partner’s body, and do the same thing: “Here is Mommy’s nose. Here is Daddy’s nose. Here is Billy’s nose.” This game helps your baby learn about himself and his body, and understand the connection between words and objects.
Most infants cannot point to a named body part until about 17 months of age. But research shows that beginning to play language games now will help your child learn more quickly.
7. Fun Activities of 8-Month Baby
- “How big is baby? So big!” – At first, you might need to gently show your baby how to raise her arms up over her head while you say, “So big!”
- Hide and seek – Big brother or sister can hide nearby. You can say, “Where is ______?” The baby can try to help you find the missing one.
- Hiding things – Let your baby watch you as you hide a small toy under a cloth or cup, or in your pocket. Does she try to find it? If not, try covering only part of the toy.
- Music fun – Your baby will like listening to many kinds of music with you and trying to dance. Inexpensive music boxes can be fun, and she can learn to start and stop the music all by herself.
8. Fun Activities of 9-Month Baby
Researchers who have studied young children report that curiosity is important for success in school. Teaching babies formally is probably a bad idea. Avoid “flash cards” and similar lessons. Young children learn best when they direct their own learning, not when you try to force something on them. Given freedom to explore, a child interested in the world around her will observe and learn.
Your child’s first year is very important in laying a foundation for a lifetime of curiosity. You can help by making your baby’s world an interesting, stimulating place, and by joining in your baby’s excitement. Here are some ideas:
Surround your 9-month-old with bright, moving colors in clothing, toys and room decor.
Let baby listen to music on the radio, records, CDs or tapes. Make a chime mobile, or hang wind-chimes to catch a breeze. Talk and sing to your baby.
Give your child textures to feel — soft, hard, smooth and rough. Make a toy, blanket or ball from scraps of denim, corduroy, velvet and satin. Touch your baby, and let her touch your skin, hair and clothes.
Let your child try new and different foods.
Give your child chances to smell safe things, such as soap, perfume, food, flowers and dirt.
Most of all, try to see and hear things as your baby does. Share the experience. When your baby gets excited about something, she probably has had a “a wonderful idea” about it. This is what learning is all about.
9. Fun Activities of 10-Month Baby
Anything your baby likes to play with is a toy. Look around your home. You probably have lots of safe objects to use as toys. Be sure all toys for baby are too large to swallow, have no sharp edges, and are safe for chewing.
- Baby is probably ready for nesting containers — things that fit inside other things. You can buy a set of nesting cups or let him use measuring cups or food storage bowls. These let baby practice the ideas of “bigger,” “smaller” and “in and out.” These make good bath toys, too.
- Use old-fashioned wooden clothespins — not spring-type — and a box or coffee can for baby to learn “on and off.” Show him how to put the clothespins on the can or box edge, and then pull them off. Baby can practice “in and out” by putting the clothespins in the container, and then dumping them out.
- Cut a hole in the top of an oatmeal box so he can drop large empty thread spools or other round objects in. He can take off the lid to get the objects out. Baby likes to do things with toys besides examining them.
- Making towers out of blocks or fitting rings onto a pole help his hand-eye coordination. You can make blocks out of empty, rinsed-out paper milk cartons. Open the top, and fold down the sides to make a cube. Tape each block shut. Rinsed-out, square baby-wipe containers also make good blocks.
- Baby may enjoy larger toys, too. A cardboard box with the ends cut out can be a tunnel.
- Baby can also roll over a pillow or beach ball and crawl into a paper grocery bag.
- Children love to do things their parents do. By 12 months, about one out of four babies will imitate housework. If you paint, let your child “paint” with water. Or give the child a broom, toy hammer, dusting cloth or other object to do work just like you do.
- Have fun with your baby!
10. Fun Activities of 11-Month Baby
Here is a mirror game you can play with your baby to help him learn what he looks like.
How to play: Hold baby on a bathroom counter or dresser in front of a mirror. Stand behind him, and point to his reflection. Using your baby’s name, say: “I see Johnny. Where is Johnny? Find Johnny. Look at Johnny.” Encourage him to point to himself in the mirror by copying you: “Here’s my nose. Where’s Johnny’s nose?” Do the same thing with toys and other objects. Pick them up one at a time, and move them behind his head. Bring them out into view on one side or the other — he will love this! Name the objects and tell him something about each one, such as: “This is a ball, and it’s round.” Ask baby, “Where is the ball?” Encourage him to point to it in the mirror.
11. Fun Activities of 12-Month (1-Year) Baby
Learning starts early. By the time children enter school, some know a lot more than others. Their families help them learn. Try some of these ideas to help your baby learn.
When they were babies, bright children were allowed to explore. They were not kept in cribs or high chairs or swings all day.
Bright children have parents who talk more with them. Their parents explain and expand on things. For example, the child might say “Doggie,” and the parent will answer: “Yes. It’s a big, brown doggie, and he’s wagging his tail.”
Bright children have been taken places — to the market, the post office, the fair, the park.
Just Enough Help
The parents of bright children give them just enough help so they can do things. For example, the parents might put chairs together so an early walker can hold on while walking. Then, as the child gets better, the parent will move the chairs apart a bit, making it just a little harder. Another example: When the baby has trouble stacking blocks on the rug, the parent might start the stack on a book, for a firmer base that won’t fall so easily. The parent provides just enough help, then lets the baby succeed on her own.