Co-bathing with your newborn is a great way to build bonds between you and your baby, and can bring a whole new element to the games you can play. And, as a bonus for breastfeeding moms, a nice warm bath can help alleviate engorged breasts as well! Try out a few of these co-bathing games to inject some energy into your routine.
The most straightforward co-bathing game for newborns may well be the most entertaining. Splashing is an entirely new activity for newborns, unlike anything else she’s likely to encounter during the rest of her day. It teaches her about cause and effect, it helps her with her motor skills, and barring an ill-placed splash down the throat, it’s a pretty sure-fire way to bring a smile to her face. Just make sure you have a few extra towels on hand.
More for toddlers than newborns, What’s Missing? is a memory game wherein you place a few easy-to-recognize (and, therefore, remember) objects–a yellow duck, a washrag, and a bar of soap, for example–on the edge of the tub, have your toddler memorize which objects are there, have him close his eyes, and then remove an object and have him try to figure out which object is missing. The beauty of this game is that you can really tailor it to your child’s needs. The younger the child, the fewer the objects. As they get older, have them memorize more objects, and make them be more specific (the red toy with white stripes, for example). Better still, get a set of letters and numbers that stick to the wet surface of tub and have him memorize those!
An oldie but goodie. Peek-a-boo is perhaps the most iconic of all baby games, and there’s little doubt you’ll have played this game to death after the first few months. But for whatever reason — be it the nakedness, the water dripping off washrags and hands, or something else entirely — the excitement seems to intensify in the tub. Don’t take my word for it; see for yourself!
Many babies (newborns especially) are sensitive to bubble baths, so while they are often quite a bit of fun, they may not be a co-bathing option for you and your baby. But that doesn’t mean you have to forgo the bubbles altogether. Grab yourself some gentle baby soap (we like any of the Burt’s Bees baby products) and a bubble wand, and just go crazy. Some babies are mesmerized by them, others think they’re hilarious, but none can resist the power and beauty of a bubble.
Co-bathing is such a fun way to relax and spend quality time with your baby while also helping you unwind after a busy day of parenting. But while bath time is relaxing for you, it’s the games that keep the newborns happy. So warm up the water, let loose the diaper, and get to playing!