Parenting Education and Learning

How To Keep Your Child Meaningfully Engaged

Shikha Batra
0 to 1 years

Created by Shikha Batra
Updated on Aug 24, 2021

Reviewed by Expert panel

Raising a child can be challenging and in the current scenario with this ongoing pandemic it has become even more difficult. It has brought about a sense of fear and anxiety around the globe which has led to short term as well as long term psychosocial and mental health implications for children and adolescents.

Children are by nature playful and they love to play with other children but with physical distancing norms in place and closure of schools for more than a year now has led to stress,anxiety and a feeling of helplessness in them. They are more likely to manifest symptoms of clinginess,increased irritability, inattention, uncertainty, attention seeking, fearfulness, disturbed sleep, nightmares, poor appetite as well as separation related anxiety.

In these times of paramount stress and uncertainty, our role as parents become increasingly crucial. Efforts should be made to keep our children engaged within the confines of our home with age appropriate activities. In this video, I am going to suggest certain age-appropriate activities which can be conducted using simple readily available material at home.

ACTIVITIES FOR 0-6 months

Playing with them with the Bright Colored Toys to attract babies: 

These would help them in-

Increasing their attention span

Improving their focus by coordination of eyes

Plushies as these are light in weight and easy to hold:

These would them in-

Multi-sensorial development

Homemade rattle:

To make this at home you would need:

  • An empty plastic box/jar

  • Any dal 

Steps to make:

Fill the jar half with a dal so that when shaken it makes noise.

CAUTION: Please ensure to secure the lid tightly so that it doesn’t open up and the child doesn’t ingest the grains and choke himself.

This would help them in:

  • The noise from the rattle stimulate baby to track the sound 

  • Developing their cause and effect relationship, i.e. when they shake a rattle it makes a noise

  • They try to reach for the rattle by 4 months of age

  • Improving their tight grip as they try to hold and shake it.

   Age appropriate books with illustrations:

You would need:

Laminated books with big sized illustrations 

Helps them to:

  • Know sounds, words and language

  • Develop early literacy skills

  • Spark child’s imagination

  • Stimulate curiosity

  • Develop ability to focus and concentrate 

  • Develops social and communications skills

  • Promotes bonding with child

ACTIVITIES FOR 6 months -1 year

Treasure Hunt:

You would need -

  • A big size box

  • Pasta/dal/rice

  • Different objects /toys

Steps to make:

Hide the toys/ small objects in a box filled with dal or pasta.

The child can put his hand in the box filled with dal or pasta to find out the hidden objects and try to name those with the help of the parent. Give a star or clap with each correct answer.

Helps in developing:

  • Sense of Touch

  • Cognitive development

  • Eye-hand coordination

  • Names of different objects

  • Different textures

  • Names of colours

Aim High

You would need-

  • Make a circular cut out on the top of the box just enough for the ball to be put in. A second rectangular shaped opening can be made on one of the sides of the box, from where the ball would roll out so that the child can trace it. 

  • A cardboard box with an opening at the top and on one side

  • A rubber ball

How to make: Steps to conduct this activity:

Demonstrate the child once or twice how to put the ball through the opening and then watch the ball roll out from the other opening. Now ask the child to repeat the same and trace the ball.

Helps in developing:

  • Eye-hand coordination

  • Object permanence

ATM Card/coin game:

You would need-

  • A cardboard box with a small slit on top

  • Coins/Plastic cards/Business Cards

How to make: Take an old tissue box or any other container preferably a cardboard box. Make a small slit on top just enough for the coin/business cards to pass through.

Steps to conduct this activity:

Take a coin or a business card and demonstrate to the child how to put it through the slit on top of the box. Ask the child to repeat the same process. 

Helps in developing:

  • Eye-hand coordination

  • Fine motor skills

Hope these activities will keep your munchkins productively engaged during the lockdown and would help them in their cognitive, physical, language, social as well as emotional development, besides giving enough opportunities to strengthen the bond that you share with your child. 

Do share your valuable feedback in the comment box.

This content has been checked & validated by Doctors and Experts of the parentune Expert panel. Our panel consists of Neonatologist, Gynecologist, Peadiatrician, Nutritionist, Child Counselor, Education & Learning Expert, Physiotherapist, Learning disability Expert and Developmental Pead.

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