I don’t know about you, but I can’t resist buying those gorgeous, brightly-coloured toys for new babies. They always look so appealing! But invariably, certainly with my own two children, they are not the most popular. Somehow, most bubs and toddlers I know seem to love playing with ordinary, everyday items. Think tissue boxes, tupperware containers, and remote controls (how do they know these are so important from such a young age?! They watch their grown-ups, that’s how!!)
Babies learn through play. It it their way of learning about the world, through exploration and investigation. Exploring objects through various action schemes (mouthing, shaking, tapping, throwing, dropping, reaching etc) allows Baby to discover what he or she needs to know about an object. What does it taste like? What does it sound like? How does it move? Can I make it move or behave differently? When you see your baby exploring an object like this, you are seeing the little scientist at work.
So this week, provide your baby with a safe household object that they haven’t explored before. Think about plastic kitchen items, paper bags, different types of material. Before you give it to your baby, think about the various ways he typically explores objects; decide how you think he will interact with this object. Then put it down on the floor in front of him, and see if you were right!
In Kindermusik classes, we regularly include object exploration activities to facilitate this type of learning and to give parents lots of different ideas to take away with them. Come and try a class with your little one this term!