I LOVE when babies turn 2 months old. I think it is my very favorite stage of infancy. They are cooing and smiling up a storm and really starting to explore the world around them, but not moving yet!!!! And you can PLAY with them!!! Even as an educator and an experienced parent, I still forget all the developmental stages and things to work on, so I try to read up on my kids development at the beginning of each month. This helps me to plan ways I can interact with my baby that are developmentally appropriate. Here are just a couple articles that I found helpful for 2 month old babies.
At 2 months old their sleep schedule may be a little more predictable than first out of the womb. Ours kinda goes like this.
EAT. PLAY. SLEEP.
I find that when we PLAY more, then he sleeps better!
So how do I play with a 2 month old?
Rotations work the best for me. I have several baby stations set up in our living room that I can rotate between throughout the day when he is awake.
1. Tummy time.
Although not always my little guys favorite thing to do, I know that it is so vital for him to have time playing on his stomach so that he develops strong neck, shoulder, and back muscles. He has great control for a 2 month old! We often lay right next to him and talk in baby voices and sing to him. This makes our tummy times much more enjoyable. I have a blanket that I keep folded right on top of the toy basket, which is tucked under an end table, just for this station. When it is tummy time, I set the blanket on the floor and pick out some toys. I have to say that the mirror toy has been ALL 3 of my kids favorite toy when they were babies. Defiantly worth the money! There is a little rattle on the string we shake for him and the sun spins and makes a clicking noise too.
When he gets fussy or cries, tummy time is over. I pick him up, snuggle him, and tell him what a wonderful baby he is. That tummy time is hard work! Then I put the toys away in the basket, fold the blanket and set it on top of the basket.
2. The swing.
The swing is another station that I have in my rotation. This gives him another position to sit in and watch the little animals go round and round. He is getting great at tracking. I watch his eyes follow the animals. This contentment lasts anywhere between 2 and 10 minutes. (When I sit next to him in the swing, I don’t use the buckle. If I am going to step away, then I make sure the buckle is on. Soon enough, he is going to be wiggling his way out.) Swings are expensive and space hogs, but I don’t know what I would do without mine.
3. The Boppy or the blanket again!
My son loves to lay in the Boppy pillow during playtime. We did have one of those nice play mats but it took up a LOT of space. I easily adapted the concept using my coffee table and I don’t have a giant toy to set up or take down or store. We just put a blanket or the boppy under the edge and attach a toy with a clip above him. He thinks this is GREAT! I try to use a toy that he can reach when his arms flail absentmindedly When he hears the rattle of the giraffe’s feet, it makes him coo!
4. Reading and Singing.
Last, but not least, 2 month olds are ready to start interacting with BOOKS! Please don’t think I am crazy, but I read all the time to my baby. He loves to hear my voice and I am happy that he is hearing so many great vocabulary words. At 2 months old, he is already looking at the pictures and has preferences for books. I try to chose books with bright or high contrast illustrations and name things in the pictures for him too. During story time I’ll also lay him on my lap and sing the Itsy Bitsy Spider while giving his body a light massage I think early exposure to reading and singing has really helped my 2 older kids develop early literacy skills and I’d like to give my #3 the same language rich environment from an early age.
It is important to know the signs of your baby. Too much stimulation is not a good thing either. I try to watch for signs that he is interested; cooing, smiling, alert eyes and to watch for disinterest fussing, turning away or wrinkling his brow (he does do this and I think it is the cutest ever, but it is his sign for getting frustrated and I know we need to stop or change activities or he will cry) Sometimes during awake time we may do a few of the rotations or all of them for less amount of time. It just depends on his mood!
Get the GEAR:
As your friend, I can share with you a little bit about what I do with my baby, but all parents are different and all kids are different. Your child may like or respond to things differently and that is OK! I wanted to share the ways that we play at our house are to get your ideas spinning on how YOU can play with YOUR child. If you have any ideas or ways you play with your 2 month old, please share in the comments below. I LOVE hearing from you!!!