How to Encourage Learning for a 3-Month-Old Baby
Your baby began learning as soon as he was born, and as your infant grows older, he will continue learning about the world around him. You can help foster and promote healthy development by interacting with your 3-month-old and by providing many ways for him to be entertained. According to Healthy Children, your baby will begin engaging with you and with objects around three months of age, so now is the perfect time to encourage him to keep learning.
Show your baby things. Around three months of age, your baby will begin focusing on objects as well as reaching for them and grasping them. You can foster her ability to control her movements by dangling toys in front of her and allowing her to try to hold them. Praise her efforts so she will be motivated to keep trying. Your baby will also begin laughing and squealing at this age and use these as cues for what toys are her favorites.
Have conversations with your child. Your 3-month-old will not be able to use words to express his thoughts and feelings but he will be able to communicate. Around three months of age, your baby will begin using smiles as a way to catch and hold your attention. If you see your baby smiling at you, respond by talking to him to encourage him to keep learning how to communicate. As you respond, your baby will also learn that he is important, that you love him and that you will respond to him when he needs you.
Read stories to your baby. Your 3-month-old will not understand the story, but she will be learning critical skills as you show her the pictures. Sharing books with your baby is entertaining for her and also provides time for you to point out shapes, colors, animals and people in the stories. Babies who are read to are able to increase their vocabulary and begin making sense of the world around them.
Play games with your infant. Stimulation is an important way to encourage your 3-month-old to learn, so actively engaging in entertaining games will encourage him to participate and learn new ways to move his body. Kids Health suggests gently clapping your baby's hands together or moving his arms up, down and sideways. You can also try moving your baby's legs as if he were riding a bicycle or making funny faces at him to see if he will try to imitate you.
Play music and sing songs. Hearing lyrics can help teach your baby important communication skills. Singing to your baby is another way to have conversations with her and will help build her vocabulary. Songs are one way to encourage your baby to interact with you because she will likely enjoy hearing your songs or listening to songs on the radio. Music may also encourage your baby to wave her arms or kick her legs, important skills for physical development.
Tummy time is a good way to help your baby increase his muscle tone and will give him an alternate perspective of his environment. Many play gyms encourage tummy time, but make sure your baby is only on his tummy while he is fully awake.
Your 3-month-old may get overstimulated rather quickly. If she starts fussing or looking away, give her a break before continuing the activity.
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