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CREATING A TACTILE PARADISE
by Jessica Ackerman
You Baby’s Developing Senses
Your baby’s sight develops as she/he perceives objects of differing color, shape, and size. Her/his sense of hearing is stimulated by listening to your voice and the music you play.
Giving your child more tactile stimulation will facilitate brain development and encourage him/her to explore his/her surroundings.
You can create a tactile paradise for your baby by letting him/her play with toys and other everyday items that help him/her distinguish between different textures.
Monitor your baby’s play at all times and enjoy being part of her learning experience.
Ideas for a Tactile Paradise
Toys: There are plenty of toys out there made to stimulate a baby’s sense of touch.
Board books: When shopping for books for your baby, look out for those that have tactile learning included.
Household items: An easy and affordable way to create a tactile paradise is to gather various items you have around the house and let your baby explore their different textures.
Choose items that do not pose a choking hazard:
For example, safe items to choose for play might include a smooth plastic mixing cup or wooden spoon, or let him/her crawl across a faux fur rug. Let your baby enjoy the feel of fabrics on your bed or furniture, like a silk comforter or chenille throw.
Outdoors, a baby can enjoy the feel of grass between bare toes or run his/her fingers over a smooth cool river rock.
Wherever you play with you baby and let him or her explore new things, always use an appropriate amount of caution and supervision so the child is not injured in any way.
Safe and Sanitary Play
When giving your baby toys and other items to play with, ensure her safety by checking for small, loose parts that she may swallow or choke on.
Avoid objects with sharp edges and watch what your baby puts into her mouth.
Keep your baby’s toys clean by washing them in soap and warm water, or a very mild bleach solution, especially if the toys are being shared among children or your baby has been sick.
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