Motor skills development: Playing catch

You and your 10- to 12-month-old will have a blast with this age-appropriate spin on the time-honoured tradition of catch. Simply pushing a ball can boost his motor development since it promotes coordination and strengthens upper-body muscles.

What do I need?

Simple: balls. Include different sizes, colours and textures – any soft or cloth-covered ball will do the trick.

How do we play?

Roll a ball to your baby. Encourage him to roll or throw it back to you, helping him if he needs it. Be sure to talk about the objects and what you re doing ('You just threw the green ball!' or 'I'm rolling the spotted ball to you'.). As your child gets older, ask him to roll or throw a specific ball.

Tricks and advice

  • At this age, your baby's aim won't be accurate. He's still working on his hand and finger motions, so he'll be swatting or slapping the ball at first.

  • Expect to help him with these early motor development skills and that he'll need lots of practice. The aim is to help your baby gain control and coordination through the repeated grasping, rolling and throwing.

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