“Children are the keys of paradise.”-Eric Hoffer
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For me, my child is my precious gemstone. I cherish all the moments of their growth and development. One such celebratory moment was when my child reached the 9-month mark.
Even though my wife and I were pretty ecstatic about this beautiful phase, at the same time, we were confused and frightened at the various changes that were to come our way.
However, I found that by having a clear understanding of these developmental milestones, you can gain an insight into the different ways to keep your 9-month old baby engaged.
Therefore, to help you keep your nine-month-old engaged and attentive, I have formulated a list of activities for nine-month-old, as well as a few critical growth milestones that characterize this age.
Developmental Milestones For a 9-Month-Old Baby
1. Motor Skills
Once your newborn reaches the 9-month mark, they are more likely to turn into an expert crawler. Personally, my wife and I were pretty thrilled when we saw our little one crawl.
Furthermore, they are such pros at changing position. I was amazed at how quickly my little one could crawl and sit back down.
Many parents often fear when a baby starts crawling too much; I had the same feeling. However, after immense surfing on the net, I figured that crawling had its own set of advantages.
Firstly, crawling helps to create memorable experiences for your child. It also strengthens their skills and abilities. For example, through continuous crawling, your child can learn to gain control of their hands and employ them in other skills like eating by themselves, coloring, etc.
Did you know that crawling is considered to be the first step to independence? Through crawling, your child can learn and enhance their sensory abilities, balance, problem-solving skills, cognition, as well as coordination.
Moreover, it helps to establish bodily awareness. In other words, children can understand where they are in the present and how to move around in their environment.
However, one important tip I can give you is to ensure that your baby is exposed to tummy time when they are awake. If they enjoy this time, they can boost their ability to crawl and stay in that position.
Another thing that I found extremely interesting is that babies love to walk bare feet. I always had an eye towards this, but it turns out that there are quite a few benefits of this.Firstly, walking barefoot helps your baby to develop the tendons and muscles of their feet. This way, they can learn to have a better grip when they stand.
Apart from crawling and walking, another physical milestone for any nine months old is improving their fine motor skills. Babies, at this age, can pick up small toys with their hands. By doing so, they can have better coordination with both of their hands.
Moreover, babies often find it intriguing how everything works. They tend to become interested in which peg fits in the hold, how things fit inside one another, etc.
However, as a parent, it is crucial to take into account the fact that certain toys may contain parts that they can choke on. Therefore, try to buy those toys that are safe for your child.On the whole, one fact that I found quite helpful is that every child is different. Every child’s abilities and motor skills may develop differently.
Thus, it is crucial to consult your local pediatrician if you have any concerns regarding your baby’s development.
If you are on the hunt for some activities for a nine-month-old, then you should ensure that the activity enhances a few of these developmental milestones.
2. Cognitive Development
Another branch of your baby’s development is categorized into the various milestones in terms of their cognitive behavior. When I refer to cognitive behavior, I mean the milestones that characterize your child’s thinking abilities.
According to various research and professionals, their first year of your baby is a crucial phase for brain development. At this age, your child’s brain begins to establish trillions of connections, i.e., neural connections. They help create a foundation for learning.
To accelerate their growth and development, you can create a stimulating environment that will keep them happy yet healthy. Some examples of such activities include games and toys.
As a dad of a newborn, I was concerned that I would have to go all out when searching for the best teaching tools for my child. But, I found that there are other unique ways to boost my child’s brain development.
One easy way I recommend is to read, talk, and sing to your baby every day. Not only do they start to remember what was read to them, but it is also a great way to bond with your child and create cherishable memories.
Communication enhances a 9-month-old baby’s development. Even though they tend to babble a lot, these may sound like regular sentences.
It’s only natural that you won’t understand what exactly they are saying. However, a helpful tip would be to keep an ear out for keywords such as “Dada” or “Mama.” These will help you understand what they are trying to communicate to you.
Besides, once your child reaches this age, they are likely to become better readers and listeners.
Therefore, an idea for some activities for a nine-month-old could be reading. This way, your child can try to learn new vocabulary and improve their communication skills.
Learning Activities For Your 9-Month-Old Baby
If you are on the hunt to find a list of games to play with a 9-month-old, then you’re in luck. Below is a list of some of the 9-month old baby games that you can play with your child to create a bucket load of memories.
1. Drop A Toy In The Bucket
The first activity is to drop a toy in the bucket. In its primary sense, you ask your child to drop a toy into the bucket to challenge them to imitate the sound effect created after the drop.
At the age of 9 months, babies tend to repeat or imitate various actions with objects. They tend to mouth these objects to understand their distinct features.
Furthermore, they tend to bang things either with their hand or with other objects to understand various sound effects.
To carry out this particular activity, all you have to do is drop a toy or block in the bucket. When the toy or block comes in contact with the bottom of the bucket, you can make a sound such as “Dhap.” Repeat this step a couple more times.
Once you have done this, the next step is to drop another toy or block into the bucket. However, this time make sure that you do not make the sound.
Your main objective is to see whether or not your child can make the same sound while dropping the block or toys inside the bucket. Through this game, your child can gain a better understanding of language skills as well as fine motor skills.
2. Squeak And Hide
Another idea for games to play with a nine-month-old is squeak and hide. As the name suggests, this activity is a great game idea to boost your child’s cognitive development as well as improve their auditory skills.
To carry out this activity, you need first to pick a squeaky toy. Once you’ve done so, make a squeaky sound by squeezing the toy.
After you’ve made a squeaky sound, hide the toy. You can hide the toy either under a blanket or behind your back. Now that you’ve hidden the toy, you need to allow your child to look for the toy by making squeaky sounds without showing the toy to them.
3. Ball Rolling
If you are surfing the Internet to find out some activities to do with nine-month-old, you can try the Ball roll activity.
For this activity, you will need a blow-up ball as well as an air filler. Before you start this activity, you need to fill the ball with air. Try ensuring that it is medium-sized.
Once you have done so, the next step is to roll the ball towards your child. Check whether or not they can stop it. If they can, try applauding them and ask them to roll it back.
However, if your baby cannot roll it back to you, show them how to do it. Please encourage them to roll it back.
The main objective of this particular activity is to enhance your child’s gross motor skills and create an understanding of taking turns.
As mentioned above, this activity helps to boost your child’s gross motor skills. Many new parents often ponder on this term. Believe me; I did the same thing. But, after Googling information about this, I found that this is a required skill for children.
In its basic sense, gross motor skills are the larger movement skills. Examples of such skills include walking, running, skipping, rolling, and many more. The main advantage of such types of skills is that they are a great source of strength required for fine motor skills.
In short, they provide individuals with an avenue for releasing energy.
4. Clapping And Singing
Another milestone for a nine-month-old baby is when they start to clapping. Therefore, an excellent idea for some nine-month-old baby games is to clap and sing with them. Personally, my child loves this. It helps to bond with him, making it a happy experience for both of us.
The main purpose of simple rhymes and claps is to introduce your child to various patterns of speech and rhymes. Even though it may seem silly, these types of games are proved to contribute to your child’s motor and cognitive development.
Plus, by clapping, your child can understand to control their muscles, as well as increase their hand-to-eye coordination.
My child and I love to sing “Old McDonald Had A Farm” and laugh at the crazy, fun animal sounds. It is one of those magical memories. That’s why, out of all the activities, this one is one of my favorites.
Many parents wonder about the various nine-month-old activities. One such game is Hide and Seen; it’s pretty similar to Hide and Seek.
For this activity, you will need a big carton and some towels or blankets. Firstly, place the soft towels inside the carton. This will ensure that no sharp objects harm your baby.
Then, place your child inside the carton and carefully tuck them inside.
Once you have done so, the next step is to pretend not to find them. Upon opening the box, make an exciting squeal and allow them to explore the box.
Through this activity, you can strengthen your child’s gross motor skills, visual tracking, social skills, as well as teach them about object permanence.
6. Bath Games
Another activity that is an ideal fit as some of the best activities for nine-month-old is bath games. My child loves bath time. Did you know that bath time activities are an excellent learning experience for your child? When you speak to your baby, it boosts their communication and language development.
Plus, while playing with the bubbles in their bath, they can enhance their hand-to-eye coordination.
If you want to be creative and fun, you can throw in a sponge and ask your child to squeeze it. By doing so, they can boost their fine motor skills.
This next activity is the perfect fit for those babies who love the great outdoors. The activity involves you taking your baby on a stroll. This can either be in a park or a grocery store.
Allow them to take a closer look at the surroundings. For example, they may notice other people walking or shopping. They may notice various items at the grocery store, pets, and children playing.
If you are at a park, you can also ask them to slide the slide, etc. The main objective through these types of activities is to enhance your child’s multi-sensory abilities.
8. Treasure Basket
Up next on the renowned list of 9-month-old baby activities is the famous treasure hunt. The main benefit of such an activity is stimulating your child’s senses and developing a variety of skills, including gross motor, cognitive, and fine motor skills.
For this activity, you are required to place a wide range of objects inside a box or a basket. Some of these objects may include natural items like vegetables or fruits, whereas others may be non-toxic, human-made objects.
Irrespective of the type of toys, you need to remember that each should be of a different texture, shape, color, and size. They don’t have to be expensive and can include items commonly found in the house, garden, etc.
It would help if you encouraged them to pick up an object and explore the basket by examining the various things. They can either put them in their mouth, feel its texture, bang them against the floor or even other objects, etc.
9. Sand Pit
Another great activity for a nine-month-old baby is the sandbox. Now that your child can sit on their own, you can make them a small sandpit and let them enjoy all their time in that. Along with the sand, you can also provide your child with small buckets, shovels, spades, etc.
The main motive of this particular activity is to boost your child’s fine motor skills. However, a word of caution is to keep an extra eye on your child. This way, you can prevent injuries such as sand falling in your child’s eyes and create a safe environment for them.
The last but not the least activity for your nine-month-old baby is reading. At this particular age, many parents prefer to read picture books to their children. While reading out to your child, the baby may understand the pronunciations of various letters or words and remember them.
A helpful tip for parents would be to modulate their voice while reading to their kids. This will enhance the overall aura and make the overall experience exciting.
Reading helps your child to understand the harmonious amalgamation of shapes, colors, background, characters, etc., for the creation of a beautiful story. In other words, it transports them into another world beyond their imagination.
Plus, children who start to read at an early age tend to develop a love for reading as they grow older. This can be quite beneficial for them in the future.
Benefits Of Activities and Games For a 9-Month-Old Baby
There are numerous benefits nine-month-old babies get from the above activities and games. These can be categorized into:
Let us take a closer look at each branch of benefits
1. Physical Benefits
Active play is crucial for a baby’s physical development. It helps them boost their coordination, gross-motor skills, balance, and fine motor skills.
The best part about activities and games help children consume their natural energy stores, promoting better eating and sleeping behaviors.
2. Social Benefits
Activities and games also have social benefits. Through cooperative play, children can learn essential life skills such as teamwork and negotiation, which may come in handy in the future.
In addition, they know how to compromise and collaborate with others, empathize and respond to others’ feelings, show affection, share, resolve conflicts, and respect the rules.
In a nutshell, social skills are essential not just for developing relationships but also for boosting academic success!
3. Cognitive Benefits
As mentioned above, games and activities teach children valuable lessons regarding their cognitive development. In simpler terms, they are the best ways to stimulate your child’s brain development, as well as reinforce these skills.
For example, self-directed play allows children the opportunity to boost their decision-making skills. By selecting a game, they can focus on that activity and sharpen their attention and planning skills.
4. Communicative Benefits
Last but not least, playing games and activities with a nine-month-old baby help improve communication skills. Through such tools, children can recognize body language and facial expressions.
They tend to remember what is being said and emulate them. Reading and role-play are great examples of activities, as they can improve your child’s auditory skills, language, and vocabulary skills.
Things To Consider When Searching For Activities For 9 Month Old Babies
From the above discussion, it is pretty evident that finding a list of activities for a nine-month-old baby is not a piece of cake. To help you out, I have formulated specific tips to remember when searching for activities:
- You need to ensure that your baby has a genuine interest in the activity. If they are disinterested in it, they may not participate. Therefore, rather than forcing them to do that activity, try looking for other activities that may grasp their attention.
- You need to ensure that the objects or toys used are non-toxic.
- Always have an extra eye on your child to ensure their safety and security.
In a nutshell, you need to remember that every child grows and develops at their own pace. As learning a new skill requires ample amounts of time, patience, and practice, make sure to encourage your child every step along the way. This way, they feel motivated to have fun.
I always tell my child that it doesn’t matter whether they have succeeded or not. What matters is that you enjoyed learning something new and would want to continue learning. This creates a positive environment for both the child and the parents.
On the whole, I have consolidated a list of activities for a 9-month-old baby. These are fun yet educational and can be a great source of laughter and excitement for your kids.
Plus, they can help boost your child’s motor skills, thinking ability, perception, and instill values that may come in handy in the future.
Out of all of them, my child’s favorites are reading, clapping, and singing. Be sure to try some of the activities mentioned above, and get ready to capture some beautiful memories!