Your baby goes through many developmental stages in his or her first year of life. To aid with infant growth and development, there are a variety of games and activities you can play with your baby to promote brain development.


Infant Development Games

Month 1

Change her worldview.
Try holding her against your chest, facing over your shoulder. Support her head gently but firmly.

Imitate her actions.
When she's quiet and alert, watch to see what she does, then do it back to her.

Month 2

Put on a puppet show.
Pop a stuffed animal or puppet out from behind your back or the side of the crib. Soon, he may start looking for it.

Take a walk.
Weather permitting, try to establish a routine of a daily walk.

Month 3

Shake it baby.
Give him a small, soft rattle and show him how to shake it to make a noise.

Play with pitch.
Try to discover the pitches and rhythms your baby enjoys. Experiment with different cadences, and notice what makes him turn toward you.

Month 4

Stimulate her senses.
Give her soft toys of different textures. Or let her sniff a piece of fruit or light perfume. Play music for her.

Month 5

Let him see himself.
Put an unbreakable mirror in your baby's crib so he can look at himself. Be sure it's a good quality so that he can really see his image, and that it has no sharp edges.

Encourage him to mingle.
Put your baby with other babies. Let them look at each other, smile, make sounds and reach out to touch.

Month 6

Help her learn to sit up.
Build on your baby's more developed physical control by sitting her up, unsupported. Surround her with pillows to cushion her tumbles and rolls. Of course, always keep an eye on her.

Month 7

Introduce some sturdy picture books.
Show your baby magazines and picture books. Get some that he can hold and handle.

Play one, two, three, tickle.
In this simple cause-and-effect game, move your hands toward your baby as you count to three. Then let loose the tickle machine. Repeat until someone calls “uncle.”

Month 8

Fun with standing.
Lift your baby to a standing position and let her dance, bounce, or walk.

Let your baby do the packing.
Put some toys in a net bag, and show your baby how to take things out and put them back.

Month 9

Establish routines.
Set up some bedtime, bath time, and feeding routines with your baby. It will help him start to know what will happen next.

Play with gestures.
Use some simple "sign language," like waving and shaking your head yes or no, with your baby. If he uses them back, explore some other “signs” to learn together.

Month 10

Play pretend.
Help exercise her brain and language skills through pretend play, like having a tea party or building a sand castle.

Walk with me.
Let your baby hold onto your fingers and try to walk, always praising and encouraging her along the way.

Month 11

Have lots of story time.
Read books to your baby over and over, with lots of dramatic voices and sounds. Let your baby turn the page when he's ready.

Push the issue.
Offer your baby a push toy, like a play vacuum or lawn mower. Even if he's not walking yet.

Month 12

Revisit family events.
Help your baby strengthen her memory by watching videos of family events, or by looking at photos of them.

Introduce the ABCs.
Try a new letter every week. Cut out each letter, or make them out of food shapes. Try guiding her hand to draw each letter with finger paint.