Peek-a-boo – I see you!! My wonderful daughter in law sent me a video of my grandson http://gofotolifestylenewbornphotography.co.za/the-first-smile/ who appeared to be teasing her with Peek-a-Boo after his afternoon nap! Apparently babies are only meant to start playing peek-a-boo from 4 months old, but here was my grandson, playing it at 10 weeks of age!!!
Two weeks later, grandpa and I could see how our little grandson delights in playing Peek-a-Boo for ourselves – and he looks so mischievous as he does it so I am convinced that he knows precisely what he is doing! As he saw one of us approach his Moses basket, he turned his head towards the mattress and hid his face from us…then he slowly peeked out at us with a huge grin on his face! He still thinks this is huge fun, and plays peek-a-boo after every nap, except that now he is actually chuckling as and when he shows his face!! I think my grandson has a very wicked sense of humour and is so very adorable, but let me not digress from the importance of playing this game!
Have you ever stopped to think how important this well-worn game might be? I hadn’t given it a thought until I saw my grandson playing it!
Peek-a-Boo is, apparently, one of the most popular in a baby’s repertoire. Once a baby has found a game he likes, he will probably play it over and over again – as is the case with my little grandson. Why? Well, Peek-a-Boo is thought to help babies to understand that objects can still exist even when they cannot be directly seen, heard or touched http://www.whattoexpect.com/first-year/peek-a-boo/. So the baby “pundits” say that they think that Peek-a-Boo helps overcome separation anxiety once a baby has graduated to the toddler stage as the toddler will understand that although their parents are not visible, they still exist – the toddler just can’t see them (and he will, hopefully, understand that they will return).
According to the experts Peek-a-boo helps the baby’s brain to develop connections, called synapses, and by repeating the same action over and over again, whilst it may bore you as an adult, it actually helps to strengthen these newly formed synapses in the baby’s brain! Which is a good thing, as according to http://www.doodahboo.com/the-importance-of-peek-a-boo-game-in-babies-growth/, if not stimulated, these synapses may start to die out – yikes, horrible thought!
And here I thought Peek-a-Boo was just something that was fun to play! Now I know that all these games, played through the ages, like “this little piggy went to market…” and “round and round the garden…” all help a baby to develop certain skills. Without even knowing the science behind Peek-a-Boo, it is no wonder that parents and grandparents still love and continue playing these games with our children and grandchildren!