Are You Engaging Your Baby's 5 Senses?
6 minute read, Written By: Momly
Sensory journey for babies: How this playful exploration can build some of the strongest skills?
Sensory play is the kind of activities that boost the response of all the senses in babies. It helps babies to be more aware about the world around them. Be it engagement through visual, auditory, kinesthetic, olfactory and gustatory senses, a 4 – 6 month old babies need to respond through all of them and there are activities to boost their response and movement and make them agile enough to give out these sensory responses. Sensory play can improve their cognitive, fine motor and problem solving skills. 4 – 6 month old is a golden period for infants as you will get to see lot of growth spurts and developments. Their sight, hearing and touch/feel senses are getting sharpened and quick to respond with sensory reflexes. Make sure you are consciously taking time to explore different sensory play idea so that they get best of visual, auditory and tactile experiences.
Sensory play supports Fine motor skills
Fine motor skills in action
- Holding, squeezing and grasping
- Playing with blocks and bricks
- Holding a colour pencil or reaching out to an object
Sensory play boosts language and communication skills
Language skills in action
- Listening to the words of others
- Able to distinguish between sounds of the letters, sounds and volume
- Develops overall sense of the word
Sensory play develops social and inter-personal skills
Social skills in action
- Able to participate in a group activity
- Empathize and understand peers
- Encourages sharing of toys etc
Sensory play plants a seed of creativity
Creative skills in action
- Playing with sand, lego blocks stimulates creative brain
- Open play facilitates expression and develops imagination
- Innovative ideas are created in baby’s mind
Individual exploration of different senses:
Texture play – Texture play is playing with different textures, helping child with different materials having different texture properties and giving them a floor to engage with these materials. This will make their analytical skills very strong as they will be able to make out the item that they are touching.
Tactile play – Tactile play is experimenting with all of the senses, but the dominating sense here is touch. Touching, hands-on experience, and feeling are three important pillars of tactile play. Soft, plush toys and varying surfaces encourage them to explore touching.
Auditory play – Auditory play boosts the ability of hearing and sound recognition in babies. Musical toys, rattles and drums are the sensory play activities to improve auditory sense.
Visual play – Visual is mainly about seeing. Colourul pictures, High-contrast pattern toys, stackers and sorters, matching cards etc can aid visual and perception development by stimulating their visual senses. Flash cards with different objects can improve their vocabulary.
5 Wholesome activities to strengthen all 5 senses
- Sand and water play – Engages their tactile senses. They get a feel of different textures.
- Musical instruments – Auditory skills are developed, able to distinguish between soft and loud sounds, calms the baby when agitated or excited
- Indoor play gym with obstacle play – Helps in movement, push them to crawl, roll and jump over the obstacle, boosts problem solving and develops logic in babies
- Flash cards – Boosts visual play and visual abilities to identify different items, different colours and words mentioned in the flash cards. Also helps them in vocabulary, reading and command over language.
- Sensory bin/tray – Putting different materials with texture differences, colour differences, and size or sound differences can employ all of the senses of babies
What our community recommends: Simple Everyday Activities to Boost Sensory development in your Babies
- Wooden ring stacker - Helps in recognizing different sizes
- Crawling tunnel – Helps in crawling and bending
- Push and pull vehicles
- Talk to your baby
- Picture books with big illustrations can help them with positive association towards books
- Touch and feel books to boost tactile play
- Nature walk with baby to help them vocabulary of nature, trees, plants and also a refreshing time around nature
- Hold your baby in different positions and also tummy time is best to engage in tactile sense
- Play with baby’s soles and feet
- Bottle rolling activity
- Drawing book with stickers of family members and different emotions to teach emotions and names of members
- Water play with buckets, water toys
- Take them out more for it helps them to make sense of the surroundings around them
- Make your baby sit on your lap during your lunch time and let them see the food you eat. This will help in solid starting journey in the long run.
- Show your baby a mirror and make funny sounds. Tell them that it is eyes, it I nose while they are glued to the mirror
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