Play together: sing songs, read books, play with toys, do tummy time and make funny sounds together – your baby will love it! Playing together helps you and your baby get to know each other. It also helps your baby feel loved and secure.
More than just a chance to have fun, play is how babies and toddlers learn about and interact with the world around them. So they need lots of time to do it — every single day. Here's why play is so important for your child, plus how much of the day should be devoted to just having fun.
When independent play begins at 3 months, they might play independently for ten minutes. By three years, they can engage in solo play for up to an hour.
As your baby will want to be near you, and you'll want to keep an eye on her, place a few toys or an activity center on a play mat or in a playpen that you place right by you. This way you might be able to squeeze in some work while your little one plays next to you.
Gently clap your baby's hands together or stretch arms (crossed, out wide, or overhead). Gently move your baby's legs as if pedaling a bicycle. Use a favorite toy for your baby to focus on and follow, or shake a rattle for your infant to find. Make different facial expressions for your baby to imitate.
Lay them on their backs with toys overhead
This is a great baby activity for a 3 to 4 month old as they love gazing at the objects floating above them. This promotes visual fixation and tracking as your baby starts to follow objects moving around. Use toys that are brightly colored, make noise, or rotate.
Children learn to talk when parents and caregivers talk to them a lot. You don't need to make a special time for talking. Any and all talking is good for your child. This includes talking while you dress or bath your baby, talking while you play, singing songs and nursery rhymes, and reading.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that babies younger than 18 months get no screen time at all.
Your baby will give you little clues that they're bored, such as yawning, looking away, squirming and crying. If you think your baby's bored, show them you're listening by giving them something different to do. Move them to another area of the room, pick up a different toy or just give them a little quiet time.
Although a very young baby can't hold toys or take part in games, even the newest of newborns will get bored and lonely if his caregivers don't interact with him during most of his wakeful periods.
Give him dolls and animals with stitched-on features. Soft toys with plastic eyes can be a choking risk. Squeaky rubber toys Anything your baby can grip and squeak will be popular. These toys are also perfect for the bath.
However, in general, with a 3-month-old baby with a goal of 14 to 17 hours of sleep per day, that often breaks down to 3 to 5 daytime naps that can last between 30 minutes and 2 hours.
Contrary to popular myth, it's impossible for parents to hold or respond to a baby too much, child development experts say. Infants need constant attention to give them the foundation to grow emotionally, physically and intellectually.
Birth to 4 months
While they may look intently at a highly contrasted target, babies have not yet developed the ability to easily tell the difference between two targets or move their eyes between the two images. Their primary focus is on objects 8 to 10 inches from their face or the distance to the parent's face.
Background Noise Is Harmful to Learning
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that children under the age of 2 not watch any television.
By 3 to 4 months: Most babies can focus on a variety of smaller objects and tell the difference between colors (especially red and green). By 4 months: A baby's eyes should be working together. This is when babies begin to develop depth perception (binocular vision).
At 6 months old, babies will rock back and forth on hands and knees. This is a building block to crawling. As the child rocks, he may start to crawl backward before moving forward. By 9 months old, babies typically creep and crawl.
That said, you don't need to interact with and entertain your baby during every waking moment. Babies need time on their own, too, so they can gradually start to understand that they're independent from you.
Responding to crying
But even if your crying baby isn't sick, hurt, uncomfortable or hungry, it's still important to comfort them. For example, you could try cuddling or rocking them, taking them for a walk, or giving them a baby massage.
So then, how much time do we really need to spend with our kids? The answer: it all depends. I asked this question on Facebook and most parents came back with how 2-4 hours each day feels good for them during the week. Too much more and they feel overwhelmed, much less and they miss their kids.
However, many babies tend to get "easier" around 3 to 4 months old. Around this age, infants may begin to sleep longer stretches and feed on a more predictable schedule. You may also start to adjust to your new set of responsibilities as a parent. This being said, every baby is different, as is every family.
Your 3-month-old may still have periods of fussiness, particularly in the evening, but fussiness should begin to improve around this age. Try your best to be responsive to your baby's needs. He should be able to trust that you will be there when he needs you.
By 3 months your baby might even 'coo'. By now your baby is probably showing emotions like interest, disgust, distress and enjoyment. Your baby can probably bring their hands together. Your baby's hands will be open most of the time now, and your baby might like opening and closing them.