When your eight-month-old baby is playing with toys, they are absorbing facts about the world around them.
The three important learning milestones at this age are:
- Objects exist even when you cannot see them for a moment, such as a ball that goes under a blanket. Yep, it's there when you move the blanket away.
- Hands can work together, picking up and dropping things. Finally, your baby can choose when to let go of an object (intentional release), and boy will they enjoy seeing what happens when they do it!
- Slithering can take you to a new place! Using all those arm, leg, and core muscles in tandem will become a favorite thing to practice as your baby rotates, rolls, and moves forward or backward.
What toys are appropriate to engage an 8-month old in meaningful learning?
The Montessori approach encourages us to select child-powered materials, not battery-powered toys.
We want to offer experiences that are grounded in reality, for example, a ball that makes a noise when dropped or rolls when pushed. This invites more thinking and brain-building for babies than a toy whose buttons light up or make electronic sounds.
Here are the toys Monti Kids has selected for eight-month-olds.Related: you might not know to look for!
Best Activities for 8-Month-Olds
The Rolling Drum features colorful balls inside the wooden exterior, which inspires curiosity. It invites your baby to reach for it as they try to move forward on their tummy, which builds strength and perseverance.
The Spinning Drum attracts your baby with movement and noise. To make it spin, they'll have to really push their upper body off the floor while reaching, which develops hand-eye coordination and builds strength. For 8-month-olds who can sit independently, they will also enjoy spinning it while it is positioned between their legs.
A Basket with Balls with varying textures, weights, and rolling speeds that are specifically designed to be attainable so that your baby stays engaged with chasing them. Spending time on their tummies, moving toward their toys, is so beneficial for your baby's development, hence several of the toys we love are designed for that practice. Monti Kids offers variety in these balls so that babies continue to be interested in new colors and textures, maintaining motivation to reach for the balls in order to explore them more closely.
The Object Permanence Box is a classic Montessori material that lets little ones repeat the same task over and over again as they truly internalize the concept that the ball exists even while it's not visible to them. Introduce this one when your baby can sit independently.
The Rocking Stacker can be used in different ways, starting with offering only one ring to practice placing on the peg. As your baby develops the fine motor ability to aim the ring over the peg, you can introduce more rings, which they can place randomly at first. Closer to a year old, babies begin to self-correct and will aim to stack the rings in the correct order.
Shape-Fitting Puzzles come in egg, cube, and spherical shapes that invite babies to practice using their two hands in coordination as they insert the three-dimensional shape into its holder. Using the left and the right side of the body together supports their brain development and prepares them for bigger movements.
Toys made of natural materials are wonderful choices for babies as they can learn about different textures, such as wood and cloth.