Newborn Care: How to Play with Your Baby

The first thing your baby will learn is to associate the feel of your touch, the sound of your voice, and the sight of your face with getting his or her needs for comfort and food met. You can encourage your newborn to learn by stimulating your newborn's senses in positive ways — with smiles, smoothing sounds, and gentle caresses.

Playing together helps you and your baby get to know each other. Through playing, you learn to trust and depend on each other, and the bond between you deepens. Playing together helps your newborn feel loved and secure. Feeling loved and secure helps babies to develop and learn.

Play stimulates new ideas and helps your baby’s brain to develop. Each new experience that your baby is exposed to helps parts of baby’s brain link together, grow and develop. This is one way babies learn more and more about the world around them, and about where they fit into the world.

Playing with your baby helps baby learn to talk and understand words. You might not always have time to stop everything and play. But you can still chat to your newborn about whatever is going on – cooking dinner, shopping, getting the bath ready and anything else that you’re doing. Singing to your child has the same benefits.

About video: Newborns' little bodies and senses are extra sensitive so playtime should aim to stimulate all of your baby's senses the first few weeks. Here are several playtime games that encourage bonding, growth, trust and happiness with your brand new baby.