by Taryn Davies |
On the look out for fun activities to do with your baby or young children this summer?
(1) Visit the park
It’s important for parents and babies to get regular fresh air so why not visit your local park for the afternoon. You can feed the ducks, have a picnic or just go for a gentle stroll. The experience will be relaxing for you and the new sights and sounds will stimulate your baby’s senses.
Take this to the next level and turn your park visit into an exercise session. Jog a lap of the park pushing the pram, this will test your aerobic fitness, raise your heart rate and release those all important endorphins.
(2) Visit a farm or petting zoo
Take your family to a local farm or petting zoo for the day and explore all the different animals. An extremely tactile and visual experience for your little ones.
Up the tempo, and pass the children’s play area for a run around or push on the swings.
(3) Baby Swimming
Not only is baby swimming a great way to bond as a family but it also teaches your little one valuable life saving skills, giving them more confidence in the water. Babies have a natural affinity with the water anyway and being in the pool means they can exercise all muscles and parts of their body.
Celebrating 10 years of Water Babies, Paul Thompson, co-founder explains, “Having spent nine months suspended in water in the womb, babies generally love the familiar sensation of floating in warm water, and the repetitive movements of bouncing and splashing provide a great stimulation for their sense of motion and balance.”
Paul continues: “We are now teaching over 28,000 babies and their parents per week to be at one with water. The joy and magical bond they experience lasts a lifetime; something that can be taken into adulthood and in some instances can even save lives.”
(4) Music and Singing Classes
Babies thrive by listening to music and through singing simple action songs they can learn how to interact with others and improve their skills and development.
Music and clapping can also teach babies to learn or react to commands. For example, this is often used in baby swimming classes to increase their physical and mental development.
(5) Yoga classes
Parent and baby yoga classes help strengthen baby’s muscles and increase brain development and coordination. Both parent and baby can relax in a calm soothing environment and yoga helps babies to sleep better. Some believe that yoga can also help alleviate problems such as colic and constipation.
(6) Baby Massage
Simple massage techniques help to stimulate your baby’s senses and can soothe and relax your baby helping to induce a more peaceful night’s sleep. Some experts believe that touch and skin-to-skin contact can help to stimulate your baby’s brain development. Many baby clinics and children’s centres offer classes and courses on baby massage so you can learn the best techniques.
(7) Baby Signing
Baby signing classes teach babies to use sign language to help them develop their communication skills before they can talk. Learning gestures and signing is great for babies as it reduces their frustration and can often help children to speak earlier than usual, allowing them to develop a wider vocabulary and higher than average literacy level.
(8) Baby Gym Classes
Special gym classes for babies are becoming more and more popular in the UK and babies as young as three months old can take part. Some classes will use ball pits, trampolines, basic gymnastics equipment, crawl tunnels and soft play areas to teach babies about rhythm, movement and coordination.
(9) Baby Sensory Experience
These sessions provide sensory development activities for parents and babies to share. The classes include fibre optic light shows, bubbles, bells, music and puppet shows. Each week the class will focus on a different sensory experience
(10) Read together
Reading to your baby from a young age can help build their vocabulary, stimulate their imagination and improve communication skills. Reading together provides a great opportunity for cuddling and bonding with your baby and they will be comforted by the sound of your voice. Your baby will be fascinated by pictures and bright colours so stock up on some baby picture books.
Take the plunge and have a go this summer. On the 9th June the world’s largest baby swimming company Water Babies will be celebrating its 10th anniversary – become one of the 28,000 each week that enjoy the magical water experience.
For more information please visit www.waterbabies.co.uk