Although babies love toys, it is incredibly important to think about the types of toys you give them, not only for safety reasons, but also so that they get the most out of them. When my baby girl was newborn, it was very easy to over-stimulate her and tire her out. If I’d waved dangling toys at her I’m pretty sure that she’d have cried. From early on, she had a fascination with things which were black and white; the first toys I bought her were black and white books. These were great for the development of her eye-sight as well as for stimulating her brain.
The next step was to introduce my baby girl to a play mat. A play mat is an excellent educational toy because it allows your baby to understand distance; encourages them to touch and grab things and gives them a safe surface to practise rolling on. I bought one with different materials stitched in so that she can have different touch sensations. My play mat came with a mirror too. This is great for developing your baby’s concentration and sense of exploration. Some mats have in-built sounds and music. I wish I’d bought one with music because it adds another dimension to your baby’s learning. I often play a nursery rhyme CD when my baby is on her mat.
Another good educational toy for a baby is a non breakable mirror. The best kind are ones which you can buy on baby websites specifically for this purpose. I knew that my baby was ready for a mirror when she started staring at herself whenever I took her to look in the bathroom mirror. It is wonderful to see the fascination in her face as she tried to work out who it was in the mirror. Sometimes she even gurgles and smiles at her reflection, although I’m convinced that she thinks it’s another baby.
The best toy for a 0-6 month old has to be a baby mobile. My baby loves to lie in her cot and stare at hers. It is musical which means that it helps with her brain development as she listens to the different patterns and tones. I even used the mobile as a way of getting her used to being in her big cot before it was time for her to move out of her moses basket. A mobile is great for my baby because she likes having something familiar to focus on when she goes to sleep. It also keeps her occupied whilst she is winding down before sleep or when she first wakes up.