There are lots of toys for child development in toy shops as for children of all ages. But among such a huge variety of toys it is not always possible to determine at once which one is the best for the baby development, what toys the baby should play first with? Which rattle to choose for baby development and so that it would not clutter up the apartment space?
Usually toys are not necessary in the first month of baby’s life. It is much more important for him in this period to accept and understand the new world and the environment where he is now. And every minute is filled up with new experiences for him. Now he is breathing – it is a new experience for him, he is fed – it is new one too, he is getting dressed in clothes – this did not surely happen in the womb within 9 months. He hears quite another way now, he is bathed, etc. And the most important thing now is that his mother carries him in her arms but not in her abdomen. And now she is giving him the most happiness, joy and understanding, and helps him to learn this absolutely new world.
After the first month of baby’s life, when he is learning to examine interesting objects and toys, some of them can be hung over his crib. They should be not very loud now, but rather rustling ones that begin to sway when you enter the room. Hang the toys at a distance of 30 cm over the crib.
A music box will be useful within the next stage of development. You can turn the magic key and your baby will listen to the music or watch the parts of the toy moving. Once your baby gets a bit older, he can wind up the toy on his own.
A toy merry-go-round has several positive qualities – the colors, music and movement. But they are not necessary together. Instead of developing, the baby will get tired and irritated. So let the toy play for not a long time.
A merry-go-round helps develop eye fixation, as well as hearing. Once you have turned on the toy and your baby has heard it, he would immediately start looking around searching for the source of the sound. He would find the colorful toy over his head and would examine it.
Even if your baby loves music ducks overhead, hang them alternately with calm musicless toys.
At the age of 2-4 months show your baby different rattles, rings, toys that can be grasped, squeezed, bitten, and listened to and the baby will try to reach and touch these toys. Give your baby toys of different shapes, sizes and textures (fabric, wood, rubber, plastic).
Bright parts and various shapes of the rattles stimulate thinking. The baby examines them with his hands and mouth. All the parts of the toys must be made of high quality and durable material, and have no sharp edges.
You can use small soft toy bracelets, which are worn on the arms and legs, or even mittens with bells. Sound items will help your baby understand that they utter sounds when he is moving his arms or legs. But these toys should not scare the baby. If he is still frightened of such toys, better give them to him in a week or later.
It is great if a toy has a few different parts. It will be interesting to the baby to play with them. He can touch and scratch his gums with the solid part, and suck or bite the soft part.
Note. If you want your baby to hold a fork and a cup properly, by the age 4 months put these items into the crib or on the mat (where the baby plays). While playing, he will succeed in holding a spoon and a cup but, of course, not without your help.
At this period grasping movements appear. And now your baby will immediately put everything he grasps into his mouth.
Once the baby has explored toys or objects, he would wonder what actions they could do (fall down, ring, roll) and he will throw all the toys out of his crib.
Some of the toys can be tied with the ropes, and a rope itself is a great toy. It can be of different colors, lengths and textures. There can be knots tied on some ropes. But stay near your baby for him not to get entangled by them!
A baby can already play with toys for the bath, which should be very simple – plastic, or rubber shapes, preferably floating ones. The first toys in the bathroom have cognitive influence: they move along the water surface, they can be dipped and watched coming up, etc. More complex toys, that perform a variety of mechanical movements, are suitable for older children, and they will not be interesting and understandable to your baby at this age period.
Developmental spheres, cubes and prisms greatly develop your baby as well, but they should be safe, with slightly rounded edges. Sensory cubes made of translucent material with various figures inside, are especially interesting for babies to examine. Also blocks are more functional, because your baby can build the houses or bridges with them later.
Sets of cups and pyramids can become the favorite toys for your baby as well. He will learn about the concepts of “more” and “less” playing with such toys. Their colors must correspond to the colors of the rainbow, to be distinguishable, contrast and bright.
Cups are multifunctional toys that will serve for a long time if made of quality materials. The cups can be stacked into each other or on each other, played with in water or used as the sand molds. The cups can have the patterned or smooth edges, a variety of pictures on the bottoms, or the holes for games with water, etc.
A peg-top is so loved by all children, as well as a xylophone and a drum. Mastering them, the baby learns, among other things, to measure force of impact to extract a variety of sounds.
Now it is the time to teach your baby about the huge world of an apartment or room, and the household goods. You need to show him how to use with water and utensils (unbreakable, of course). The sooner he starts learning this side of the home life, the safer his play will be.
Remember that after six months old your baby is just starting to really learn about the world and concepts, simple toys will help him in this, and the complex ones will only harm.
You should know
1. Wash your baby’s toys with hot water every day.
2. Any toy given to your baby will be more interesting if you present then with creativity. You are still the main character in your baby’s games. Even the most beautiful and expensive toy will remain just a piece of plastic without your merry show and gentle explanation. Play with your baby and enjoy the games.