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Newborn Development-The Importance of Playing and Interacting with Your Newborn

Updated on February 22, 2011

Simple Brightly Colored Toys Work Best

All parents know that a newborn is incapable of holding onto or playing with a toy such as a rattle. But this does not mean that you should not buy toys or spend time playing with your newborn on a regular basis. There are different things that you can buy that will work well for both entertainment and developmental aids.

Although newborns do not have the ability to grab things yet, they will follow everything you do with their eyes. They are still learning what colors are and if something peaks their interest, they will let you know. By playing with a simple yet colorful toy with your baby, they will watch how you work with it and in time, they will begin to mimic what you do. A rattle has always been a favorite choice for many babies. They come in various shapes, sizes,and colors. They also make a cool little noise that newborns will instantly turn towards when they hear it. Once your baby has shown an interest in a certain rattle or toy, try giving it to him every day. While the ability to reach out or curl his hand around it will not be there at first, this is a great way to encourage the development that your child needs.

Listen to and Agree with What Research Tells

There has been a lot of research done on the development of the newborns brain. It has been shown that those babies who have been given things to look at such as a mobile or other similar object while in their crib, swing, or car seat, have learned to focus and pass developmental milestones a lot faster than those who didn't. It is from these objects that a newborn's brain will become stimulated and their functions will begin to excel.

Don't Over Stimulate Your Newborn

While the research does show that stimulation is crucial to the development of your babies brain, you must be careful that your little one does not get over stimulated. It is quite common for a newborns brain to become over stimulated. Keep things simple. Do not have a lot of colored toys and noises happening all at once. Allow your newborn to concentrate on one toy at a time. This will enable him to understand how it works and allow him to process it all without overwhelming him with more than he can handle. This is the best way to encourage brain growth and development. You want to help stimulate your newborn, not stress him out.

One way you will know that your newborn is beginning to suffer from sensory overload is that he will start to cry. He will no longer want to play or do anything with you. If this happens, just take everything away except one special toy and see if he responds again. If he does, let him just follow that toy around while you show it to him, or as he gets older, let him hold it. As he grows bigger, he will get smarter and his developmental skills will be stronger. He will then be able to take in more toys, colors,sounds and actions.

 As parents, we want to help our children grow and become smarter. We revel in their ability to learn and try new things. But we must remember that their little brains can only take in and do so much at a time. Knowing when to stop and let them process what they have learned, is the best way we can help them grow. Knowing you are there to love them and play with them will encourage them to keep learning and developing each and every day.


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    • Sunnyglitter profile image

      Sunnyglitter 6 years ago from Cyberspace

      These are good tips about playing with your newborn. My son is 11 weeks old, and some people tease me for playing with him already.