Love on that baby
Love on your baby. Then they’ll be really smart.
Here are 50 ways to make loving connections with your child:
- When you catching them gazing at you, gaze back and smile.
- Touch their hand when you speak to them.
- Look at them in the rear view mirror of the car and catch their eye. Smile.
- Play hide and seek with a scarf.
- Hold her in front of a mirror and smile. Say “You are so smart and beautiful.” (To your child AND to yourself!)
- Regardless of how the night went, start the morning with a hug and gentle assurance that today’s going to be a good day.
- When your baby speaks to you, respond.
- Read 3 books together every day.
- Learn 1 new thing about child development every day.
- Name what you see in your child. “You are curious” “You can pick up cheerios” “You love your bunny”
- Compliment your child on things that have nothing to do with their looks.
- Sit on the floor anytime you can to be available physically for your baby.
- Respond to crying.
- Be intention about phone time when you’re with your baby.
- Expect the best of your child.
- Be empathetic to their big emotions. We all have big emotions, but we’re better at regulating. They’re learning.
- Know what to expect at different levels of development so you can provide just the right amount of challenge.
- Smile at your child from across the room.
- Understand that repetition helps your baby know what to expect. Which elicits calmness.
- Understand that chaos is confusing to your baby.
- Let your baby play on the floor most of the time. Carriers and containers limit movement.
- Make wake-up time, in the morning and throughout the day, snuggle time.
- Understand that you are the apple of your baby’s eye. Everything you do is noted and stored in that little brain.
- Change out toys, wall decor, etc. often to make things interesting. Brains tune in when things are new.
- Use music to set the mood – in the car and at home. Make sure the volume is not too loud for those little ears.
- Give your child a choice any chance you can. This encourages thinking.
- Talk about what you do as you do it. This encourages language development.
- Ask your child questions. This encourages language development.
- Touch your child gently. Often. Physical touch communicates attentiveness.
- Smile at your baby as you change their diaper. Even when it stinks really bad.
- Name emotions for your baby. Help them begin to understand their feelings. This takes a while.
- When you’re talking to someone else, catch your baby’s eye and smile.
- Communicate non-verbally as much as possible. This teaches your baby to read your face.
- Body to body contact releases stress chemicals in your baby’s brain.
- Smile at your baby as you give them a bottle or nurse.
- Give your child attention.
- Cuddle at bedtime and before naps.
- Sing often.
- Monitor stimulation – too little is boring, too much is overwhelming
- Calmly soothe your child when they are distressed. Share your calm rather than adding to the storm.
- Understand that separation from you is stressful for your baby. Tell them you’re leaving and when you’ll be back.
- Let your baby touch everything they can. Talk about what they are touching.
- Look at your child with ‘future’ eyes. Tell them about the wonderful things that will happen in their life.
- Smile at your child when you’re eating a meal together.
- Have lots of conversations with your baby.
- Protect your child. They’re very vulnerable.
- Respond to your baby’s facial expressions.
- Linger during bath time. Baby’s love water. Let her play!
- Go outside often.
- Smile at your baby. (yes, I know this was repeated 8 times)
Here’s wishing you a very loving, very happy Valentine’s Day!
Nurtured Noggins is here to support you in your parenting journey. 😍
Want more parenting tips? 24 One-minute parenting lessons it took a lifetime to learn
Wondering what to do when baby wants to cry instead of play? Check out our post on the reasons newborn babies cry!