As your baby grows, her developing skills and mental abilities will be reflected in toys that capture her imagination. Free-standing rattles that she can swipe at while eating, for example, will keep her amused at first. Large soft blocks are ideal for a six-month-old baby because they can be used for building and throwing, but an older baby will prefer hard blocks or wood or plastic, stable enough for more complicated structures. Puzzles and games that challenge your baby, such as simple jigsaws with knobs to make the pieces easier to pick up, are important for her development. Provide your baby with as wide a selection of toys as you can.
Your baby will enjoy playing games with you. To ensure she makes the most of new toys, show her how they can be used and encourage her to be imaginative with them. If you:
- Roll a ball to her and encourage her to roll it back to you, she will exercise her hand-eye coordination
- Show her how to build a more complicated structure with blocks, such as a bridge, she’ll practice her delicate manipulative skills
- Fill a container with water or sand and show her how to fill up measuring cups and containers, she’ll experience the movement of different substances.
All babies enjoy splashing in water or floating a boat in a bowl. Provide unbreakable containers to pour and fill.