Aim of the game:
This is a great way of showing your baby that their communication attempts can make things happen. This builds their motivation to communicate and helps them to become an intentional communicator.
What you will need:
There are lots of toys that are great for this but cause and effect ones are the best. We’ve listed some of our favourites below but feel free to use your imagination.
Wind up toys or a rainmaker tube
A click clack track or ball run
A Jack in the box or pop up toy
How to play:
- Sit opposite your baby so you are face to face and place the toy at their eye level (we’ll use a ball run as an example)
- Hold the ball in position and say “ready, steady…..” pause to build up anticipation and wait for your baby to indicate “go!” through a wriggle, eye contact, noise or gesture
- As soon as they do, you say “go!” and reward their communication attempt by releasing the ball on the ball run
- If your baby doesn’t make a communication attempt after waiting a little while that’s ok. Just go ahead and say “go!”, this way your showing them how to play the game and they’ll join in when they’re ready
- Once you’ve regained your baby’s attention, repeat again a few more times Remember to finish games on a high so your baby doesn’t get bored and will want to play again next time.
How to extend:
- You can combine this game with requesting for ‘more’ – see ‘More?’ game here.
- Gradually increase the waiting time between “ready, steady…..” and “go!” to see if they do something different or more to communicate
- Leave a gap between “ready…” and “steady, go!” to see if they’ll have ago at saying a little more
- Don’t forget to role model other words whilst you are playing the game (e.g. ball, down, more, finished).
- Introduce another person to help your child to learn to take turns and wait a little longer (e.g. a brother, sister, another adult or friend).
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