How to Play With Your Baby

Learn to play with your baby in order to help them develop their physical skills, language, and social-emotional skills. Keep reading!
How to Play With Your Baby
Nadia Yépez Suarez

Reviewed and approved by the neuroeducator Nadia Yépez Suarez.

Last update: 27 December, 2022

Children’s play is very important for their proper development. Through it, they discover their body and how the world around them works. For this reason, it’s very important that you dedicate some time throughout the day to play with your baby and give yourself body and soul to this precious moment.

Do you want to know how to do it? Then don’t miss out on the information that we’ll provide you below.

A baby’s play begins with their own body

From the moment your baby is born, they begin to discover the world through their skin: The contact with your breast, your caresses. and the moments they spend in your arms favor the development of their corporal perception.

In addition, little ones recognize the sounds of the environment and, little by little, identify the objects. The soft, calm voice they hear when you sing or talk to them captures their attention and fills them with valuable information.

Their eyes begin to perceive the shapes of objects. But your features and the colors of your face are their favorite images, especially when they’re associated with moments of pleasure, such as breast time.

At first, their body movements are disorganized and very simple. But, as the days go by, they begin to make more sense. Therefore, little by little, they understand that their hand reaches their mouth, that their feet can make a hanging toy make noise, and that a caress tickles them.

All of these body actions are games for your baby and they can repeat them alone or with your help. This gives them the encouragement to keep learning.

When you see them play with their body, you can accompany them with a phrase: “You’re clapping with your hands!”, “What a nice hug!”, “Do you want to move the mobile with your feet?”. In this way, you enrich the learning even more.

Parents playing with their baby.

Motor games bring coordination , emotional, and social benefits.

The baby’s mouth is also good for playing!

Babies are born with the innate ability to learn their mother tongue, so there’s no need to teach them to speak.

If we pay attention, from a very young age, they try to reproduce the sounds they perceive from the environment, especially those emitted by the humans around them. Vocalizations and babbling are also a game and represent the foundations of spoken language.

According to linguist and philosopher Noam Chomsky, language is an innate ability and requires very little linguistic input to develop. However, some psycholinguists point out that oral language requires external stimuli to decode and understand expressions and the meaning of words.

Like other aspects of child development, children’s language results from the combination of genetics and environment.

In turn, the baby’s mouth helps them explore their body and the objects around them. When they manage to put their hands or the toys in their mouths, they explore all their characteristics and have fun in this way.

You may be interested in: The Development of Language in Babies

Baby’s play with objects

Little by little your baby begins to relate to objects: Their bottle, mobile phones, or rattles allow them to interact with something external to their own body. Exercising movement on them and observing their reaction is quite an adventure!.

For this reason, you can use some of the following elements to create simple and fun game options:

  • Burying elements
  • Permanence boxes
  • Building blocks
  • Squishy toys that make a sound
  • Large balls or cloth
  • Items to transport other items, like a truck and some large wool pompoms
  • Musical instruments, such as drums or xylophones

According to neuropsychopedagogy, babies quickly learn about the world around them through their senses.

Therefore, allowing the child to touch, smell, look, hear, and taste favors the learning of colors, shapes, smells, textures, and sounds. And all of these experiences are also promoted through play.

A mother sitting on the floor playing with her baby girl.

Conclusion regarding why it’s important to play with your baby

In these modern times, we need emotional security, knowledge, attitudes, and values to adapt to living in society. You can begin to form all this in your baby through play, even from very early stages.

Play allows children to develop their potential, as it stimulates all their skills at the same time: Cognitive, motor, social, emotional, and communication. But playing not only favors learning, but also helps to strengthen the bond with their family or the environment that surrounds them. So, put the blanket on the floor and play with your baby!

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Berko, J. (2010) El desarrollo del lenguaje: una revisión y una vista preliminar. Pearson, Madrid. pp. 1-35.
  • Barón, L., Múller, O. (2014) La teoría lingüista de Noam Chomsky: del inicio a la actualidad. En: Lenguaje. vol.42 no.2 Cali July/Dec
  • Díez, Mª del Carmen; Pacheco Sanz, Deilis I.; de Caso, Ana Mª; García, Jesús N.; García-Martín, Esther (2009). El desarrollo de los componentes del lenguaje desde aspectos psicolingüísticos International Journal of Developmental and Educational Psychology,  vol. 2, núm. 1, 2009, pp. 129-135
  • Fajardo, Z. I. E., Pazmiño, M. I. A., & Dávalos, Á. A. M. (2018). La estimulación temprana como factor fundamental en el desarrollo infantil. Espirales revista multidisciplinaria de investigación, 2(14).

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.