I know. I’ve been MIA lately.
BAD NEWS: It’s been over two months since I wrote a blog post.
GOOD NEWS: I have a nine month old crawler on my hands!!
EXHAUSTING NEWS: We are trying to get our daughter to sleep in her crib, self-soothe, and drink breast-milk every 4 hours instead of on demand. Cue sleepless nights. Word of advice to new parents….teach your baby to sleep alone straight away! My anxiety got in the way (checking on our daughter’s breathing throughout the night while co-sleeping). It’s important to get rest. For your sanity & your child’s well-being.
So….about that explore space….
It was literally overnight that my loving babe went from staying in ONE PLACE to wanting to EXPLORE THE WORLD!!!
When your baby gains independence it is exciting. The world is beautiful, messy, and evokes so much wonder. But it’s a major headache if your house has all concrete tile floors. Even a mom not suffering from PPD/OCD (more on that next time….) can think of a thousand ways a baby + concrete=trouble.
So what’s the solution?
I created a “yes” space for her in our guest bedroom.
This space isn’t intended for her to sit alone in. But if I need to quickly change a load of laundry, or grab a cup of water, I know that she is SAFE for a minute or two.
I also know when she feels like taking a risk (which may involve trying to crawl over a pillow and not quite making it), she won’t be knocking her head too hard because the space is covered with floor mats.
Some of the skills you can work towards in your play space include:
- Sitting without support
- Exploring different objects with varying textures, sizes, smells, sounds, etc. Toys with buttons, drawers, noise, and lids can be fun!
- Pushing toys
- Filling baskets
- Knocking down objects like blocks
- Using thumb and first finger together (pincer grasp)
- Banging toys together
- Learning to let go voluntarily
- Learning to point, clap, and wave
- Holding toys & objects appropriately
- Shaking and dropping toys
- Looking for toys that have dropped out of sight
- Testing limits & observing parent’s response
- Playing independently and gaining her own interests
- Pulling up to a standing position
- Rolling a ball
- Hand & knee crawl
- Cruising around furniture
- Walking with two hands held
- Standing for a few minutes alone
- Walking a few steps
Here are some pictures of objects in our space in hopes that you can create a worry free space for your baby to be wild and develop her gross & fine motor skills!
An exploration space dedicated to your crawler (soon-to-be walker) will help you say YES to your child’s innate curiosity.