At around 7 months, baby becomes keen to copy sounds. Her understanding also develops more and she'll start to understand single words that you use often, such as "byebye". This is also a great time to introduce baby sign, as babies begin to understand gesture and use it themselves around this age.
Nursery Rhyme Time
Children love action nursery rhymes. Baobao is no exception, her favourite currently being Tommy Thumb. Although babies can't join in, nursery rhymes are still incredibly beneficial. In terms of language development, they encourage listening and speaking skills (Baobao's love of Tommy Thumb coincides with her beginning to ask questions) as well as building memory and the anticipation skills.
Puff and Blow
Puff and blow games, such as blowing on your baby's tummy during nappy changes, blowing and catching bubbles or humming on to her fingers, are excellent for building feeling, looking and listening skills. As baby gets older, you can encourage them to copy you and blow and hum herself. which helps her to develop the muscles needed for speech.
Yes and No
Yes and no games, such as hiding a toy behind your back and asking if you have it then encouraging baby to nod yes or shake head no, are the first steps to intellectual analysis skills. They also introduce the concept of turn taking.
Laughing games, such as fast and slow tickles, raspberries, round and round the garden and poking your tongue in and out, are excellent for encouraging a feeling of security, enjoyment and the interaction of play.
Feet and Toes
Feet and toe songs, such as 'This Little Piggy' and 'Wee Wiggie' are good for sociability. Singing songs while in physical contact builds friendliness and humour, as well as talking and imitation.
Peekaboo games are great at this point in life, to help baby understand that objects exist even when you can't see them. This makes her feel more secure when she can't see you.
Start with simple games of peekaboo, hiding yourself behind your hands and then saying peekabook when you move your hands away. The next stage is showing baby a noisy toy, such as a rattle and then hiding it behind your back, encourages baby to find out where things go when she can't see them. Then, once baby understands this game, hide the toy under a cloth and encourage baby to find it.Read, Read and Read Some More
We are a high reading family here. Introducing books early, allows baby to work on their concentration, conceptual thinking, cognitive thinking and memory skills, as well as speech and friendliness.
Soft books made of cloth, with simple pictures are amazing for this age group. This is also a great time to introduce simple board books. Xiaobao enjoys books with real babies, such as Babys Day, Baby Talk and Global Babies, but now is also a good time to introduce simple stories with short sentences. Family stories, with parents, babies and siblings, depending on your family set up work well. You can even change the names of characters to match those of your own family and pets. This enhances your baby's own self image and her own idea of family.