Shake, Rattle, and Roll


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Babies are so much fun. The expressions that they make when they discover something new, are surprised by something, or are amused by something, could entertain me all day long. Noises fall into the category of things that can surprise, amuse, and startle all at the same time.

 

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So many baby toys these days incorporate the stimulation of several senses at once, because babies are using all of their senses from birth to learn and discover (and to make parents feel like they're getting more for their money, I think). It's very possible to have bright colors, different sounds, and several textures, all in one small toy.

Rattles are a classic toy that, I think, will always be popular. Although they have evolved some into butterfly wings that make a crinkling noise when touched or other things like that, the act of moving an object and causing it to make a noise is an important developmental discovery.

From a parent's point of view, I see rattles and other noise-making toys as a fun distraction in a car seat, an easy way to play a game with a baby, and sometimes, a huge headache.  Babies definitely make up for the monotonous sounds when their eyes light up, though, and they smile a huge, impressed smile after causing the sound all on their own.

A rattle makes an excellent band addition while the baby and I are playing music in the kitchen with pots, pans, and wooden spoons, as a makeshift maraca and keeper of the beat. It can be a pretend phone that rings when shaken, an extra fun addition to a rousing game of peek-a-boo, or the perfect play mallet for a baby to hit his mom on the head.

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