Shopping for Charlee has, in all honesty, been a treat… with a side of dear-god-this-is-insanely-overwhelming. The sheer magnitude of toys, trinkets, and teethers is staggering, let alone the plethora of clothing conglomerates and their offerings.
When it comes to a newborn, you have to remind yourself that the marketing for any and all products for this age range is actually aimed at you, the parent, and they’re trying to tug at your heart-strings and poke away at your cutie-pie buttons.
Thanks to this, and more importantly, thanks to much of the reading we’ve been doing, our focus for Charlee’s early days, weeks, months, and years, is to really focus on more of the learning and development tools and toys to truly capitalize on Charlee’s flourishing mind during this incredibly important window of time.
Ironically enough, we had no idea about Infant Stimulation Cards until just recently, even though we’ve had them in our possession since Becca’s baby shower back in August.
A thoughtful friend purchased the Wee Gallery’s Art Cards for Baby, Jungle Collection for our little Charlee.
At the time, we had no clue how to use them, when to use them, or how important they can be for baby’s development. We came to learn that vision is one of the least developed senses at birth, and so it can be valuable for parents to offer stimulating images to aid in the baby’s development. At birth, a baby’s retina is not fully developed and while an adult retina can distinguish many different shades of light and colour, newborn retinas can only detect large contrasts between light and dark, or black and white.
As totschooling.net explains, Infant stimulation cards are black and white patterned cards that you hold up in front of your baby as a visual stimulation tool. Research shows that infant stimulation cards will help calm and soothe your baby as well as increase concentration skills, enhance natural curiosity and stimulate the creation of brain cell connections.
The best distance to place the card is 8 to 12 inches (30 centimetres) from your baby’s eyes, or about the distance of a piece of paper. You can tape the cards to the side of the crib, the wall next to the changing table, in front of your car’s baby seat, or just show it to your baby and let the baby look at it until she loses interest. These cards are good for newborns up to around 5 months; just make sure baby is alert and active while showing these cards.
For our little Charlee, it was undeniable.
We began by sitting her in the Baby Bjorn Bouncer Mini, and arranged the cards at the appropriate distance, propped up just beside her.
I kid you not, she could sit like this for 30 minutes or more! She loves it… we call it her ‘reading time’.
Since then we’ve taken a recommendation we found online, and laid them out to help stimulate her curiosity during tummy time.
It works like a charm and really gets Charlee to raise her head and try to look at the images.
I’ve found many cards online that you could technically print on your own and then mount on cardboard or the like, but if you’re looking for some nice quality prints, Wee Gallery offers a nice selection at affordable pricing. You can buy direct at http://weegallery.com/store/art-cards/
Have you invested in Infant Stimulation Cards? Share some pictures of your setup and what’s worked for you and your little one!