early childhood education

Bonding with your Baby

I wrote this blog post for Nest CIC but thought I would share it here for you as well.

Hello. My name is Lucy and I own and run all the classes for Mummy & Baby Buddies. I started this journey when I was on maternity leave with my Little Girl. I struggled to find a group to take her to, so I then had this crazy idea that I would train as a Baby Massage Teacher. Fast forward 2 years and I have also trained to be a Baby Yoga, Toddler Yoga and Tummy Time Instructor. I love what I do and love meeting all our new mums and babies that come to our groups!

During lockdown or periods where we are stuck in the home can be difficult to create a bond with your baby. With the baby groups removed and our support network disappearing, it can be difficult, but there are loads of way that you can help secure your bond with your baby at home and we will look at a few below:

Baby massage – whether you attend a session (face to face or online) or use the skills you have learnt from a previous group; Baby Massage can be relaxing for both parent and baby. It also helps to support positive touch between the two of you and can stimulate the production of Oxytocin, while enhancing baby’s growth and development. Massage can also help to relieve the symptoms of colic, constipation, and trapped wind, therefore creating a calmer, more comfortable environment for both of you.

Baby yoga – Baby Yoga has a lot of the same benefits as Baby Massage and can help encourage your confidence in handling your baby and understand their cues. Baby Yoga can be a lovely way to relax with your baby and help develop a feeling of closeness between you. Baby Yoga can also be that little bit more fun as it can be adapted to suit your requirements. During Yoga sessions you can also learn simple breathing and stretching techniques to encourage a clearer mind.

Tummy time – Tummy Time is described as time that baby spends awake on their tummy, and it can be a great way to support baby’s development while enhancing the bond between you. Tummy Time can encourage baby to play, so could be incorporated in play time. Tummy Time can be a great opportunity for skin-to-skin contact between you and baby supporting your bond and releasing the love hormone Oxytocin. Tummy Time should always be when baby is awake and always supervised.

Toddler yoga – Toddler Yoga can be an excellent way of having fun while connecting with your toddler. It can also help parents and children to have a more positive interaction. Toddler Yoga can also help with teaching positive loving touch and gentle movements, helping Little One feel calm and connected. Toddler Yoga can be as upbeat or calm as you would like. It can be energising for you and energy releasing for little one, releasing feel good endorphins.

Sensory play – Sensory play can be anything from your voice to a specifically designed mat. It can be as simple or complex as you like. It will help your bond with your baby as you will get to know what they like and what they don’t while having a little bit of fun together.

Singing – Singing can be incorporated into all of the above activities. By singing to your baby during the activities it can create a little bit more fun for the both of you and baby can listen to their favourite sound, your voice.

Play – Play can sometimes sound strange when we talk about a new-born baby, but it can be more fun when incorporated with any of our other suggestions. It can be linked with above with simple musical instruments. Play can help you bond with your baby and get to know their likes and dislikes.

Have a snuggle story – There is nothing better than getting all snug and cosy on the sofa with Little One and having a cuddle and a story. It can be really helpful for encouraging the bond between you and baby, as baby can listen to your voice, their favourite sound. Having story time can also help with baby’s development and their understanding of the outside world.

Planning time in your day for a specific activity can also be easier for finding the time, as sometimes when we are in the house, we are thinking about everything else that needs to be done.

But the most important thing to remember is to make sure you and your baby have fun and work at your own pace!

Are there any ideas that you have used with your baby and how did they go?