Even though your young baby can’t move around and do much, that doesn’t mean that their brains don’t need stimulation and activities to develop their body and brains. Age appropriate activities help to develop their executive functioning skills (attention, concentration, focus), their gross and fine motor development (hand grasp, hand and eye coordination), and language skills.
3 weeks to 8 weeks
Newborn babies eyes are very light sensitive and their retina is still developing. After a few weeks they can see light and dark patterns and can begin to focus on objects right in front of them. High contrast black and white images are a great activity to use with your young babies. There are lots of free printable ones online so you can print out your own set or you can purchase our “How to Guide” which includes a set. Place the image approximately 30 cm/11 inches from your baby’s face and give them a few minutes to look at an image before swapping it over to another one. Using these high contrast images will not only help to develop their vision this has also been found to develop their executive functioning skills. Executive function is responsible for an individual’s ability to maintain their attention, focus and concentration among other things. These skills are highly related to academic and life success. This is an easy activity to do each day with your baby between approximately 3 weeks and 8 weeks of age. Notice your baby’s attention developing over the weeks. As they get older they may be able to focus on the images for longer periods of time before they lose interest.
8 weeks to 4 months
After two months your baby’s vision will develop and they’ll begin to be able to track moving objects. This is a great time for them to use play gyms where they lie on their back and track toys hanging from above. In time your child will hopefully start trying to touch the objects with their feet and arms.
For the other 3 areas of play to focus on download our FREE TIP SHEET “5 Things You Should Do With Your Infant During The Day” from our Free Resources page. https://www.5ingredientparenting.com/product/things-you-should-do-with-infant-during-the-day/