How to play with a baby

For babies, play is not just about toys, it’s about back-and-forth interactions. Anything from singing a song to your baby as you change his nappy to cooing and smiling back and forth with him as he sits in your lap can be fun for him.

Try these fun ways to play with your baby.

As babies enter the second month of life, they become noticeably more interested in the world around them. While they don’t “play” in the way that we often think of—pushing trains around a track or feeding a baby doll—they are eager to explore the objects and interact with the people they see everyday. At this age, play is not just about toys, it’s about back-and-forth interactions—anything from singing a song to your baby as you change his nappy, to cooing and smiling back and forth with him. Loving and playful experiences like these help your baby learn.

At Wriggles and Giggles Sessions we repeat activities that will help with all stages of development from birth to 5 years We also help with ideas to take home and parenting tips and techniques. To join a group in Yarm, Darlington, Hartburn, Ingleby Barwick, Newton Aycliffe send us an email

What are some fun ways to interact with your baby in the early months?

Offer interesting objects for your baby to look at.

You will see that as you move an interesting object slowly from side to side, your baby will follow it with his eyes. This is called tracking and is one of the first ways that young babies explore the world while building their visual skills.

Place your baby so that she can kick or hit at a mobile or rattle.

Over the next couple of weeks, she will connect the act of kicking with the sounds the mobile makes when struck. This helps her understand cause-and-effect. And your child will also discover that making noise is just plain fun.

Make everyday routines playful.

For example, you can add a massage for your baby after baths or before bedtime, which helps him feel bonded to you and also helps him understand that his body belongs to him (body awareness).

Share books together.

Read to your baby or just let her gaze at the pictures. When your baby gets just a little older, she will probably take the lead—grabbing the book and gumming it—while you ask her how it tastes!

Offer interesting objects to touch.

You can bring the objects close so your baby can touch them and begin to learn about how different objects feel. This helps him learn through his senses. Exploring objects with eyes, and later hands and mouth, also helps babies discover how different objects work and what they do. This makes your baby a good thinker and problem-solver.

Even Babies Need a Break

Parents may find themselves confused about their babies’ responses as they play. It’s not uncommon to wonder: We were having so much fun a minute ago, and now he’s crying. What happened? It may be that your baby reached his limit for stimulation and was telling you he needed a break. Babies have their own individual ways of responding to stimulation—light, sound, touch, and activity. Some can take in a lot of stimulation before they top out and become distressed. Other babies get overwhelmed very quickly by what may seem to be just a small amount of stimulation (like brightening the lights in the room.) There’s no right or wrong way to be. A baby’s ability to manage stimulation is based on his unique wiring.

Some common “I need a break” signals include:

Turning his head away

Arching his back

Closing his eyes or falling asleep


Fussing or making “fussy” sounds


We have sensory bags available to purchase on our website at the link below. Each bag also includes unlimited access to our interactive online videos for early years