4 October 2016
There is nothing better for your mental well being than throwing your head back and belly laughing until your stomach hurts, your eyes are full of tears and your cheeks hurt. Well it may come as a surprise but babies are no different to us adults. Just as you find things from mildly funny to damn right hysterical, so will your baby.
So how do we turn those giggle muscles on and boost baby belly laughs? Babies develop their side splitting sense of humour in a clear process so essentially they find different things funny at different stages in their development.
We have all been there looking into the eyes of a new born and gasping in amazement as a smile as wide as the Cheshire Cat appears on their perfect tiny faces.
"Look honey, she is smiling at us!"
"No darling it's wind"... Cue huge disappointment.
Knowing the stages can really help you tune into your little Bundle of Laughs.
From 0 – 6 months comes the first amazing humour step – the first giggle, usually around 3 months where they are not laughing at anything in particular, but if you laugh with them it becomes contagious as they delight at your reaction. Babies find really random things funny but very quickly things on the laughter train soon speed up.
From 6 months a baby is not only learning about his own sense of humour and deciding what he finds funny but he is also connecting with your sense of humour. Like your very own Simon Cowell he will watch as you perform from blowing bubbles, to squeals, to raspberry blowing to loud pops, to deep voices, to squeaking your nose. How does he reward your efforts when you finally get the "that’s a yes from me?", with the loudest outburst of continual giggle fits much to everyone’s amusement.
From 6 – 12 months your baby is starting to understand the world around him and that he also has the most talented amusing parents on the planet. Babies start to find physical fun hilarious, so throw yourself around, roll on the floor, jump around and bounce will have him giggling and smiling like a trooper. He will be delighted by the unexpected so when daddy pounces from around a corner and your pelvic floor almost gives up the ghost, your baby will be chuckling and snorting at his daddy’s incredible talents.
From 1 – 2 years a toddler now has a better understanding of props and the part they play in having a laugh. Putting socks on your ear or his trousers on your head will have him mimicking along with you, answering his shoe as a phone or his cup as a hat will guarantee a hearty bout of giggles.
From 2 – 3 years it’s the exciting Comedy stand up show and you are the audience on permanent laugh and clap mode. Children are really finding their comedy genre and can make up words, jokes and really beginning to understanding their own take on humour and how to make their friends and you laugh. Potty humour is at the forefront of all funny topics and ‘poo, pee and wee’ will be up there with the one liners. After the punchline remember to laugh – always, it’s part of the parenting rule book, no matter how unfunny you may find it. Just laugh along yourself and marvel at how you developed this comic wonder over the past 3 years.
Just keep the Mother-in-Law jokes to yourself just for now!
Happy October laughing everyone,
Kind regards and miles of smiles,
(Managing Director of Evolution Childcare)