Fresh into parenthood, you’re probably eager to spend all the time you have with your newborn – and get them started with learning everything about this big world they’ve finally arrived in. Well, as with the rest of us, learning comes in progressions for newborns. As parents, we’ll do well to understand the signs and developmental stages of our little angels as we prepare to raise them into the superheroes we surely want them to be.
When are newborns ready to learn? Or play?
Of course, even newborns can’t be active and alert all the time for you to play with them. In the first few months, they’ll likely spend most of their time sleeping. But there are ways to tell if your baby is ready to interact with you, instead of winding down for another long, luxurious cat nap.
After they get past the first few weeks and become more energetic and alert, you can start looking out for the signs that they’re waiting for someone to come and play:
- A baby that’s quiet and alert is ready to interact with daddy and mummy
- A tired or hungry baby may turn fussy – do not mistake this for excitement or eagerness. They’re probably hoping to rest or get some milk
Newborns and their eyesight
It’s important to note that newborns won’t actually be able to see properly until after some time. So if you’re hoping for a two-week-old baby to begin recognising you as mummy, you’ll have to wait for quite some time.
Here are the developmental stages of a newborn’s eyesight:
So in case you were wondering when’s a good time to whip out the toys and fun peek-a-boo sessions, wait till you’ve crossed the 3-month mark! Your newborn will be able to look at you better from that point on.
And on that note…
What to help newborns learn with
For the young parents, prepare your “fun kit” with your newborn with all sorts of toys, mobiles, and items to facilitate their learning! It’s best to cater to toys that are able to stimulate your newborn’s senses, not just sight!
Here’s a list of toys and items you might want to stock up on:
- Unbreakable toy mirrors
- Toys that make sounds, like musical keyboards
- Textured toys and rattles
Toys that have vibrant patterns and contrast in their colours will greatly help stimulate and develop your newborn’s eyesight, by the way. That’s why most toys are brightly coloured, and you rarely ever see dull ones put on sale.
And aside from toys, your very own face can also help a newborn learn more about the world! Stick out your tongue, make funny faces, whatever you can think of – allow your newborn to observe you and subsequently imitate what’s happening in your expression. There’s a huge guarantee you’ll get a good laugh out of it, and also be able to teach your newborn about expression.
Now that you’re all set, it’s time to catch your newborn baby at a good time and start having the time of your lives. Babies are infinitely curious as they age, and will only become bigger delights as time passes. Enjoy the moment right now, and have fun.