Going to the playground might seem like something you do with a toddler rather than with a baby. But there are things you can do really early. Like talking to other parents while your baby is asleep, for example… 🙂
There are things to do with your baby too. Having fun in a baby swing, for example, something that has been shown to help the baby develop his sense of balance too.
Check our tips and head for the park!
You Can Go There Early
As soon as your baby can hold his or her head and back steadily and has started to be more awake and more interested in the surroundings, you can actually start taking trips to a playground if you like. My experience is that this happens when the baby is around 4 months old. By that time, their vision has also improved enough for them to find it interesting to watch some action on a distance.
Your baby is still too young to be able to play much, but he or she may very well enjoy seeing other kids playing, as well as just checking out the new surroundings.
Where To Go
To be able to actually do something with your baby at the playground, try going to one that has a baby swing with a high back.
Also, make sure the playground is sheltered from strong sun and strong winds.
A lot of other kids (and parents) is also much more fun that sitting in an empty playground with your baby.
In a baby swing with a high back, your baby can swing early. Probably already at around 4 months. But do it slowly!
At around 6 months of age, you can try putting your baby in low back baby swing too.
Many babies love slides. As your infant is still too young to go down alone, it doesn’t really matter how steep the slide is. Just use the lower part of it, hold your baby all the way down, and go! Or sit together; fun for mom or dad too – but take it easy!
As your baby approaches 1 year, he or she might be able to slide down gentle slopes by him or herself.
Playing In The Sandbox
Sand in usually lots of fun – and tastes good too, if you ask any baby… 🙂 Either you sit down with your baby in the sandbox or you’ll have to wait until he or she can sit steadily, at around 6 to 8 months.
At this age, your baby’s idea of playing in the sandbox is probably grabbing-as-much-sand-as-I-can-and-shove-it-into-my-mouth-before-mom-stops-me. Well, a little bit of sand will not be dangerous, but don’t leave your baby alone!
Bring a bucket and spade or a small plastic car and play with your child.
Watching Other Kids
Watching other kids is actually often great fun for a baby. If you’re lucky your baby will be content just sitting in the stroller looking around, while you get the opportunity to sit a talk to other parents. Nice!
What To Bring
Here’s list of things that are practical to bring along:
- Paper for runny noses
- Water to wash dirty hands or eyes or nose with
- A camera/mobile phone with a camera
- Something to eat and drink, both for you and your child
- A blanket so that you can breastfeed without your baby being totally distracted by all the fun going on around you
- Bucket and spade or other toys to play with in the sand box
- A blanket with waterproof backing to sit on (or change diapers on)
- Extra clothes and diapers
What To Wear
What to wear will depend on the season, of course!
If it is very warm, the clothes should above all protect your baby from the sun.
If it is cold, a snowsuit is probably the best clothes for your baby.
If it is not too warm outside, a pair of waterproof pants is very practical for your baby. Use them either with only a shirt or a jacket depending on the weather.
Use them together with ankle high boots or rain boots. This way you will not bring home the whole sandbox in the shoes and trousers after playing in it…
Your baby will also need a cap.
You also need to put on clothes that will make it possible for you to play and to stand still for long periods.
It is much more fun to go to the playground if you are dressed to participate in the playing rather than worrying about your designer jeans or shoes…