At 9 months, playtime for your baby is so much more fun! More than toys, at this age, babies are interested in exploring the environment. Which is why, one important thing to do at this stage is child proof your house. That way you won’t have to say no, every time your baby wants to explore around the house.
To satisfy the ever curious little beings and their “absorbent minds”, in this edition of our series, let us discuss how you can enrich the environment and experiences of your baby with these activities for 9 month olds. You can surely continue with some activities that I suggested in the previous articles of this series. These activities are mere guidelines. Of course, they can be done before and after 9 months. So feel free to tweak them as per your child’s interest and understanding.
Reaching Out To An Object
Your baby could be cruising and crawling everywhere in the house by now. Place his/her favourite toy far away and let your little one crawl and reach out to the toy. This sense of achievement is great for them.
Scribbling With Ball Crayons
At this age, they have a full hand grip, so it is a great time to introduce ball crayons. They are available easily online or in local stores these days. Those are the first crayons that you would want to introduce to your child. To make it even more interesting, engrave something (like your child’s name) on it. The engraved writing will disappear as your child continues to scribble.
DIY Montessori Permanence Box
This is a standard Montessori material that is meant for infants and toddlers, once they start sitting up on their own. Traditional Montessori material is expensive but this one can be easily DIYed. This material helps in developing the object permanence skill – which means that if an object is out of sight, it does not mean the object does not exist. This material also helps in refining full hand grasp, fine motor skill, hand-eye coordination and concentration. You can read more about the DIY and how to use this material here
It is never too early to introduce musical instruments to children. I have talked about introducing a piano to infants in my earlier articles of this series. You can introduce percussion instruments like drums at this age when they are sitting upright and have a little more control over their body and hand movements. Ghungru rattle is also a great addition to the toddlers’ musical instruments collection. Benefits of music and musical instruments need a separate post altogether but I am sure we all agree that music is a magic potion for children and adults alike!
Red Color Treasure Basket
A treasure basket is a basket or box filled with a variety of items that are found around the house. The purpose of the activity is to provide the infant with the opportunity to explore and discover on their own. Through this activity the child will experiment with different objects and learn how to manipulate the materials.
This play and exploration of objects and their properties by children is called Heuristic Play - coined by a child psychologist Elinor Goldschmeid in the early 1980's . My child and I have had a lot of treasure baskets in the infancy and young toddlerhood stage. I started with primary color treasure basket. I just gathered safe objects that were red in color and put them together. I used to tell my son – this is a ball and it is red in color. This is a ring and it is red in color. And then let him do the free play with these items. He used to be engaged with such baskets for hours.
Singing Rhymes & Songs
This is an evergreen activity with children and it never fails. Sing rhymes and songs to your children, no matter what you think about your voice quality because the most beautiful voice in the world for a child is his mother’s ☺ This is not only a great bonding activity but is also a language building one. Infants are in a sensitive period of language acquisition and more exposure to different languages will help them absorb more sounds and frequencies. I had downloaded some Spanish and Marathi rhymes at that age for my son, along with Hindi rhymes, Hindi being our mother tongue. So go ahead and explore rhymes and songs of different languages. Internet is a blessing for us!
That is it for now. Do look forward for more such, month-wise activities for children in this series.