What to do with this activity?
Babies and toddlers love it when you do silly stuff and make them laugh. From around 5 months old your baby will enjoy physical humour. Babies enjoy the unexpected - like peek-a-boo and bump on the knee games where suddenly you (gently) drop them.
Keep up the chat while you do everything. Take them by surprise with a sudden funny noise, or blow a "raspberry" on their arm. Try to put baby trousers on your head, or splash yourself by "accident" when you are bathing them. When you are feeding them solids, swoop the spoon in a different direction suddenly and fly around. Make it up as you go along, and have lots of fun with your baby or toddler.
Talking is one of the most important skills your child will learn. It seems to happen naturally, but in fact you have a very important role to play. Your baby will learn to talk by hearing other people talk. The more you talk with your baby and respond to their noises and babbles, the more you help them learn to communicate. This will help them in every aspect of their life.
Songs and rhymes are especially good for children as the rhythms and repetitive language make it easier for babies to learn language skills. Babies love songs and rhymes, especially hearing the sound of your voice. This is a great way to help your child to talk and listen. Rhymes with actions explain what words mean - "pour me out" in "I'm a little teapot". You can also create sound effects when you are singing songs and saying rhymes. Use your hands to clap, your fingers to click and your mouth to make playful sounds and whistles.
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