Of COURSE you want your baby to be healthy and happy. That’s a given. But wouldn’t it be great to put them on the right path to becoming the world-changing genius you’re sure they have the potential to be? Be honest: Have you ever watched your baby do something amazing and then found yourself zoning out, imagining her — movie montage style — winning all the awards they give super brilliant people? No? Just me?
Ok but you get the idea. We all want our babies to have every advantage we can give them. And it turns out building your baby’s brain power is surprisingly easy, even if you’re the type who routinely thinks you’ve lost her phone while it’s in your hand.
1. Read To Them Every Day
Books are a real powerhouse for babies. (Adults, too, but when was the last time you read a complete novel?) The more colorful and tactile the books, the better. Books like the Little Baby Bum Singing Storybook. Well before they can use words to express themselves, babies can receive and understand language. Singing to them, letting them hold the book and turn the pages, using different voices, making funny sounds — all of it helps your baby’s brain develop. And when you have story time with them, you help them develop a love of reading, a gift that lasts a lifetime.
2. Wiggle And Giggle
This is another two-fer. Exercising their little bodies also exercises their minds. Toys like Little Baby Bum’s Wiggling Wheels on the Bus encourage your baby to crawl around and sing along. Squeeze Buster the Bus to hear the official Baby Bum version of “Wheels on the Bus” while it wiggles like crazy! Your baby will crack up while he claps along. Is there anything better than the sound of babies hysterically laughing? No. No there is not.
3. Clap, Clap, Clap Your Hands
There’s a reason why games like patty cake and peek-a-boo have been played for decades. Moving and touching hands, especially in rhythm, helps babies connect in a concrete way with the world around them. They learn about spatial awareness as they discover where to place their hands. These beloved classic games also build baby’s rhythm and coordination. Bonus: literally everyone knows how to play them.
4. Be Generous With The Tummy Rubs
Everything you do with your baby provides them with something new to learn. No presh or anything! The good news is that snuggling and cuddling actually helps your baby’s brain grow larger. That’s a win-win. It’s also a good way to teach them to love their little growing bodies. When you’re reading to them, when you’re giving a bath, even when you’re getting them to sleep, adding more touch into the mix is the easiest brain boost there is.
5. Let Them Make Messes
Ah, just what every mom wants to hear, right? Letting your baby and toddler get a little messy is not just an amazing sensory experience, it also helps build fine and gross motor skills. Splashing the day away is a certified genius maker! (Not really, but it does help build brain power!)
6. Then Clean Them Up
Enlisting your baby’s help cleaning up after playtime is almost like a cheat code. It means a little less work for you AND another way for your baby to learn. Cleaning up involves sorting — blocks go here, books go here — and that develops the brain skills that help with memory, attention and problem-solving. They also learn they’re part of a team and not just the little Lord of the Manor.
7. Let Them Have Their Jams
Sorry but your kid may not immediately fall in love with the indie band you’ve been listening to since college. But that doesn’t mean they don’t have favorite tunes. Letting them listen to the songs they love has all sorts of benefits for their little brains, including learning sounds and meanings of words. It can also help them self-soothe and let’s be honest: there are times when that really comes in handy. Toys like the Little Baby Bum Musical Mini Plush let your little one cuddle their favorites (like Mac the Monkey) while they sing along.
Experts agree that play is critical for early brain development — especially singing games and toys that engage and stimulate little minds. They foster and support brain growth for babies and toddlers — and they’re actually FUN. See? You’re a genius-level mom and you didn’t even know it!