What you need:
- empty plastic bottles (shampoo, baby powder)
- washcloths with interesting designs
- baby socks
- fabric paint
- magazine pictures
- contact paper
What to do:
Try these creative and easy ways to provide visual stimulation for your baby.
- Changing-table toys. Collect a variety of items such as a small, clean, empty baby powder container or empty lotion bottle, which an older baby will enjoy holding during changing time. Let your baby select an item, and, as she holds it, name it for her. As baby gets older, she will begin to associate the shapes of the bottles and print designs with the name of the item.
- Washcloth books. Collect several washcloths that have interesting designs on them and sew them together at one end to make a fabric book. Cuddle with your baby and "read" the book together. Describe and point to what you see. Your baby can use the book in her crib, in her car seat, and, of course, in the bath.
- Sock puppets to wear. Babies love to kick up their feet and grab their toes. Use brightly colored fabric paint or fabric markers to paint bright colors and funny faces on the front of your baby's socks. Sew small yarn pom-poms onto the ends of the socks.
- Highchair visuals. Cut out a variety of interesting pictures from a magazine to affix to the highchair tray — pictures of children eating and favorite food items are especially appealing. Cover the tray with clear contact paper. While your baby eats, point to and describe the pictures. Eventually baby will be able to point to the pictures herself and use words to identify what's in them!