Infant Stimulation

Sixtine has been very alert since birth. I have read some books and some online sites about stimulation in infancy and I have been doing some activities with her hoping to help her develop her full potential.

I started with black and white flash cards when she was about two months. It included different shapes (squares, triangles, circles,…), but also faces (smile, surprise,…) and animal shapes (cats, ducks…). I would flash them when she was happy, fed, and rested so that she was fully alert and interested.I also put some of the flashcards above her bassinet, and changing table and she has stared at them numerous times.

Now that she is a little older, I am going to introduce colors, numbers and pictures of everyday life objects/people with matching words. I am also working on a fabric/texture basket that she could play with.

I also sing in French and English to her. She seems to enjoy old classics French music and nursery rhymes better than anything and often sings back. Her favorite song seems to be “Petit escargot” which always get her smiling.

If you have read the post I wrote entitled “When baby says Mama” , you may know how important it is to talk to baby and listen to him/her above all. I enjoy talking to her and asking her questions and wait for an answer. She usually stares at my mouth very carefully, and moves her mouth at the same time, trying to reproduce the sound. She sometimes answers, sometimes not. But she knows I am interested in what she has to say.

I let her smell my food, perfume, and flowers and touch different temperature objects.She actually had lots of fun pulling the petals off the rose Papa had bought for her for Valentine’s day ! She loved it !

As for motor skills, she is a great little mover ! I put her on her stomach – which she doesn’t enjoy much – and she will put herself back on her back after a few grunts ! I let her grasp my fingers and pull her gently until she reaches a sitting position. She also rotates on her playmat by moving her legs like Elvis ! I have the feeling that she will be all over the place in a few months !

She also enjoys watching Sparkabilities 0 to 6 months.

What are some fun things you do with your infant? Anything you would like to recommend?

Montessori : Intriguing, Exciting, Overwhelming

I want the best for my child. But doesn’t anyone?

When I was pregnant, I liked to picture my baby-in-the-making running towards me at the end of a fun day at school. And it got me thinking. What do I want for her? Is there any alternative to the regular curriculum? I am not sure why I was interested in something potentially different for her but I was/am.

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I would like to provide her with as much opportunities as possible to speak French and go to a French daycare if at all possible.But what else?

I am currently ready “How Smart is Your Baby?” by Doman which is a very interesting book. Some of the activities suggested for babies aren’t always realistic but I enjoy knowing more about ways of developing my baby girl’s potential. We have been using flashcards and she seems to be very interested in them.

On the other hand, I have started to look into Dr. Maria Montessori’s philosophy of education and I am intrigued, excited and overwhelmed.

There are three English Montessori schools here (with French initiation) on the island but they only offer education from 16 months and up.

Until then, what can I do for her? Is there some kind of “curriculum” for young infants?

I am not sure where to start. when to start. if I should start at all.

I would love some feedback from parents sending their children to Montessori schools or homeschooling the Montessori way. And for those who are against or not interested in this philosophy of education, please share why ! Thank you !