Tiny Hands, Big Adventures: Help Your Baby Learn to Grab Day 3: Tiny Hands Big Adventures!

Tiny Hands, Big Adventures: Help Your Baby Learn to Grab

Grabbing is an important aspect of eating – especially if you are choosing to follow baby-led weaning. Children who can now sit comfortably and look at their food must also be able to grab the food and put it in their mouth.

Why Is Grabbing Important?

  • Grabbing food means that babies are touching their food. Touching food (or any other object) forms important neurological connections, which have a direct, profound impact on their cognitive, sensory, and linguistic development.

    Babies have many nerve endings on their fingers, so the more sensory experiences they have, the better their brain development.

  • Textures are important in the acceptance of food. By touching food, babies start beginning to understand different textures like mushy, dry, or wet. This will prevent texture sensitivity and subsequently picky eating
  • While bringing food to their mouth, they will also learn to maneuver the food, bring it to their mouth, and develop good hand and eye coordination
  • How to Encourage Grabbing?

    As early as 3 months old, babies start to discover their grasping skills by grabbing objects that catch their attention. You can help develop this skill by presenting shiny, noisy, or colorful items for them to grab.

    As they approach 6 months old and start solids, they'll be more adept at bringing things to their mouths. Baby gyms are a great way to encourage this behavior, with rattles and other toys for them to grab and explore.

    4 Fun Activities to Encourage Babies to Grab

    Encouraging your baby to develop their motor skills can be a fun and exciting activity for both you and your little one.

    1. Playtime with bubbles

    Blow bubbles with a bubble maker while your baby watches and prompt them to follow the bubbles with their eyes. You can even try grabbing a bubble yourself to show your baby how it's done. Not only is this a great way to exercise your baby's grasping skills, but it's also a fun sensory experience for them.

    2. Colorful Blocks

    Stack blocks on top of each other while your baby watches, and encourage them to hold a block themselves. Guide their hand to stack a block, and watch as they try to grab and stack more blocks on their own. Even if they don't get the stacking part right away, the bright colors and different shapes of the blocks will keep them entertained and engaged.

    3. Moving Toys

    Place your baby on their tummy and move a stringed toy in front of them, encouraging them to grab and reach for it. This will not only help them with their grasping skills, but also improve their overall physical development.

    4. Tugging Fun

    Try tugging a soft string cloth with your baby. Simply place one end of the string in your baby's hand and gently tug on the other end, prompting them to pull the string towards them. This game will help strengthen their grip and improve the flexibility of their fingers.

    Remember to enjoy this exploration time with your baby as they learn to touch, feel, and grab!

    Tomorrow, we will discover ways to promote a fundamental skill – chewing – in your little one.