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How to play with your baby or toddler: 5 books with easy and educational play ideas

Struggling to keep your little one entertained every day? These books are packed with fun play ideas that are easy to set-up and help to stimulate your child...

Keeping your baby or toddler entertained every day while ensuring you are supporting their development can sometimes be difficult, and it’s very easy to run out of ideas fast. But you don’t need to spend a fortune on new toys or set up elaborate activities (unless you want to), we’ve rounded up five books with fun games and play ideas for babies and children that will keep them stimulated and bring you less stress. Win-win.

Baby Play for Every Day: 365 Activities for the First Year

You can aid your baby’s development from day one with this book, which has simple ideas for every day of their first year. For each month you can get an idea of key milestones they may reach or be aiming for, along with fun activities to inspire and entertain them. Some may be things you do already, like playing peekaboo or singing songs, but there are countless suggestions you may not have thought of to help develop everything from their gross motor skills to their vocabulary.

Baby Play For Every Day book

Baby Play for Every Day, £11.65, Amazon

The Play Hooray Handbook

This is set to be your go-to handbook for play ideas throughout your little one’s childhood, as it features 100 games for babies, toddlers and older children too. One of the highlights of this book is that it utilises household items you likely already have lying around, but gives you fresh ideas of how to use them to entertain and educate children with minimal prep.

The Play Hooray Handbook

The Play Hooray Handbook, £10, Amazon

The Five Minute Mum: Give Me Five

Featuring ideas for children aged one to five, this book is a must-have for busy mums. Each game or activity only takes five minutes of preparation using household items, and is designed to focus on a particular skill, so you can be reassured that they are learning too.

The Five Minute Mum book

The Five Minute Mum: Give Me Five, £10.46, Amazon

The Joy Journal for Magical Everyday Play

Filled with easy activities and crafts for children and parents to enjoy together, Laura Brand’s book has something to suit all moods. Whether you’re keen to fill an entire afternoon or just need a quick activity to keep children occupied, she’s thought of everything.

The Joy Journal for Magical everyday play

The Joy Journal for Magical Everyday Play, £8.82, Amazon

The Baby Club: Play and Learn with Your Baby

Fans of CBeebies’ The Baby Club will love the accompanying book to the show, which promises simple activities with amazing benefits for your child. Whether it’s singing together, exploring everyday items or telling stories, this book is packed with ideas along with explanations of how they can help your child’s development and understanding. Order your copy from Amazon for £8.98.

The Baby Club book

The Baby Club: Play and Learn with your Baby, £8.98, Amazon

Keeping Mum’s selection is editorial and independently chosen – we only feature items we love and approve of. We may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page.

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