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8 Ways to Play With Your Baby When You're Stuck at Home

Latest Stories
Latest Stories

Start really enjoying those awake windows.

Having a baby means you’re often housebound, and some people are OK with that and are really good at passing the time and being present with their baby, but many more of us struggle, and need some more solid ideas of exactly how to play with a baby. Sure, Bluey has inspired a whole playbook of make-believe games for parents to get in on, but they require a kid who can talk. Playing with a baby who's under one, or even two, is a little trickier. So, if you need a few more moves in your repertoire to get through the day — there’s only so much "peekaboo" you (and your kid) can take — we’ve put together some easy-to-do ideas. May these help you look forward to the awake windows, and really enjoy your time together at home.

Kitchen Musicals

Even young babies tire of seeing the same toys, but the kitchen is an untapped source of interesting objects. You might not believe it, but a whisk is fascinating to a four-month-old. Pull out some Tupperware for drums, utensils for drumsticks, securely closed spices for rattles and the stage is set. Put on some background music and encourage them to play along to the beat. Rock on, baby.

Build a Fort or Obstacle Course

The enthusiasm for forts starts early. If your baby is still at that lovely lie-on-back stage, put a colourful tablecloth or sheet across two chairs and lie underneath together to look at the colours. If they are on the move, you could make a little obstacle course for them to crawl/walk/climb through to get to their toy-filled fort.

Water Play

If your baby loves a bath, you don’t have to reserve it for bedtime. Pop them in (you can get in too) and play with different wash clothes, buckets, bottles and bath toys. If it’s a hot day, you could set up a wet play station outside (on a non-slippery surface) with plastic cups and bowls and some utensils for mixing. Just make sure you stay with them at all times. Note, water play is a parent-supervised activity always.


Make a cosy nook and fill it with cushions and all your baby’s story books. Look through them together, read them aloud (with funny voices) or stack them up and knock them down.

Food Play

If you're baby has started solids, start to think of it more as 'play'. Giving them time to explore new foods, flavours and textures will lay the foundation for a great relationship with food. It takes 8-10 attempts of offering and trying a food for a baby to like a new food, so set them up in the highchair and try out some baby-led weaning.


OK, not a game as such, but if you need to get some chores done while you’re on babywatch, sorting drawers/cupboards/wardrobes is doable. Babies love pulling things out, and are fairly entertained when things they can touch are being put down, picked up and put away all around them. It might not be the most efficient way to get it done, but it will get it done.

Music Appreciation

The Julie Logan Music program, which holds music classes for kids from 3-months-old, recommends taking a moment with your baby to sit and listen to a piece of music. Soak it up and practice really listening. You could also hold your baby and march along to the music, or have a dance.

Baby yoga

Need to get moving? There are numerous baby yoga classes online for you to try out. Load ‘em up and have a stretch.

Get in the Garden

If you’re lucky enough to have some outdoor space in your home, make the most of it. Fresh air does great things for people, big and small. Take your baby outside to touch the leaves, grass or dirt. You could go out and collect things in a bucket to examine together afterwards, or do some actual gardening together watering, planting and even weeding.

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