It’s important that babies and toddlers get an early start in developing their motor skills. By doing the activities below, you can be confident that your children are developing the foundations of physical literacy.
All activities are in PDF format.
Babies 0 – 1 Years Old
This activity helps your infant to develop basic upper body and lower body movements, as well as strength and coordination to life their head. Start with your baby lying on your chest and progress to placing them on their stomach on a blanket or play mat.
This is a good activity to help your child to develop basic upper body and lower body movements, as well as visual acuity. Lay a blanket on the floor, place your baby on it, and surround them with a variety of colourful baby toys within kicking or reaching distance.
This activity helps your baby to develop basic upper body movements, visual acuity, and core strength with balance. Sit with your baby on your lap, sitting upright and facing forward like you. Point at different things that are happening (children playing, cars driving, birds singing, rain falling, etc.) and talk to your baby about what you are seeing.
Toddlers 1 – 3 Years Old
Blow bubbles for your toddler and encourage them to try to catch the bubbles. Make sure that there are no dangerous obstacles where you are playing, and be sure to let your toddler have a turn blowing the bubbles!
Sit on the floor opposite your child with you legs spread apart in a “V” shape (sit on your knees if kneeling is more comfortable). Have your child sit the same way facing you, then roll the ball back and forth. This game helps your toddler to develop fine motor control and hand-eye coordination.
Children love to climb! Here are some ideas to help your child to explore climbing safely. This is a great way to develop their balance and physical coordination, along with some agility, while building strength in their arms and legs.
This activity helps your toddler to develop fine motor control in the hands, as well as hand-eye coordination. Sit together reading your favourite picture books—pointing a pictures, discussing the images, and letting your child turn the pages.
Sit with your toddler and play peek-a-boo by hiding your face behind your hands. Once your toddler knows the game, encourage them to use their hands and lead the play. Progress to hiding behind furniture (indoor) or trees and shrubs (outdoor) and moving in and out of hiding while saying “Peek-a-boo!”
Show your child pictures of big cats such as tigers, lions, leopards, and cheetahs, then pretend that both of you are tigers (or lions, leopards, etc.). Add a chasing element to the game and you are helping your child to develop agility, balance, and early running.
Talk with your toddler about rabbits and bunnies. How do they move? Play “Follow the Leader” while hopping, and take turns being the leader. This activity develops basic jumping along with agility, balance, and coordination.
Enjoying this article? Have a little one under the age of four?