When to Get Baby Involved in Activites
From the time you bring your little bundle home from the hospital, your life will never be the same. Day by day you will notice little things that are different, and as your baby grows, you will start to see parts of the world through his/her eyes. As soon as I found out I was pregnant last year, I knew I wanted to put our baby in baby swim classes as early as they would let me. I wanted to get our child used to the water so she would be confident, even if the water depths stretched farther than her toes. I asked friends and someone suggested checking the YMCA, and a phone call and one swim class later, I am so glad I did.
Knowing when to put your baby into activities isn’t a given. A number of factors come into play, like where you live and what activities you personally enjoy. Once you have some ideas, then you have to find the activities in your area—I highly recommend checking your local YMCA, as that is where I found my daughter’s “Shrimp Swim” classes. The minimum age for these is six months, and it just so happened that our little one hit her six-month birthday a mere week before the fall session started.
If public pools aren’t your thing, you can also find a variety of other baby activities to enjoy. Ask your pediatrician or look online for Mommy & Me music classes, tumbling, and groups hosting play dates for babies and their moms (or even dads!). The music classes work out wonderfully for babies of any age, while the tumbling sessions may be better suited for toddlers. Check for “Meetups” in your area as well–these popular networking groups keep popping up all over the country, making it easy to keep your baby socially active from as early as birth, if you want.
When in doubt, give your pediatrician a call to discuss how much activity your baby can handle at a certain age, or ask at your next appointment. Our daughter is currently allowed about 20 minutes in the pool, but we constantly monitor her lips and skin for indicators that we should take her out sooner. She enjoys it so much I wish I could take her every day!
Putting together a social schedule for your baby or toddler is a truly enriching experience. It introduces them to a new part of the world, encourages socialization, and builds confidence–plus, it’s fun! What activities do your little ones currently enjoy?