Tummy Time


Tummy Time

© Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Department of Early Education and Care (Jennifer Waddell photographer). All rights reserved.

Your baby may spend a lot of time in his car carrier or infant seat. To stretch and grow muscles, your baby should spend time on both his tummy and back so he can look, listen, reach, and explore.

  • Lay your baby on his belly on a blanket, mat, or towel on the floor or soft ground. Since he sleeps on his back, this time on his tummy gives him a different view of things!
  • Lie down on your tummy facing your baby. Give him smiles and sing songs to get his attention and encourage head movement.
  • Give your baby a chance look at and reach for objects you place next to him, like a plastic mirror, a board book, or toy.
  • You can also hold up toys in bold colors or shake a rattle in front of him. 

When it is time to turn over, your baby will also enjoy looking at and reaching for items while lying on his back.

  • Dangle toys attached to short straps or plastic chain links or shake a rattle or soft bells to get his attention and encourage him to turn his head and reach for objects.
  • By six months of age, your baby will be grabbing his own toes as well as toys!

You can also spread a blanket out on the grass in your yard or in a park and let your baby enjoy the warmth of the sun, a gentle breeze, and a view of the outdoors. (Remember that your baby needs you next to him when playing on the floor. Never leave your baby alone with soft toys, blankets, or items that he could swallow or could block his airway.)

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