Alternatives to Technology and Keeping Your Baby Entertained
Mom guilt is a real thing.
There are hundreds of lists on the do’s and don’ts of parenting and allowing your child to have screen time is one of the biggest things parents are chastised for. In fact, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children younger than 18 months should not be exposed to screen media other than video-chatting.
The problem is, it’s not realistic for all parents to eliminate screen time before their child reaches 18 months.
A recent Baby Center poll shows that 76% of moms allow their babies to have screen time. And, an astonishing 26% of moms lie about how much screen time they allow their baby to have.
To be honest though, it’s not all that surprising.
We know parenting is HARD, and you’ve got to catch a break somewhere.
There’s nothing more challenging than getting your little one to sit still. Whether you’re enjoying a family meal, waiting for an appointment, or running errands, your busy baby is active through it all.
We’ve all been there. And this is the true inspiration behind our Busy Baby Mat.
We wanted to come up with a great way to keep your baby occupied, all while stimulating their development and avoiding the infamous mom guilt, we all feel.
Now – for the one question we know you’re thinking…
Will this mat keep my baby entertained as long as a 20-minute episode of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood?
This is a reasonable question and the answer to this is yes and no. Every baby has a different attention span and different developmental needs.
And while we do want to keep your kiddo entertained so you can get some things checked off your to-do list or enjoy a meal out in public, we also aim high and focus on their physical and mental development too.
When Your Baby’s Development Means the Most
Research suggests that a child’s brain develops most rapidly during their first 3 years of life. Activities like playing, singing, reading, and talking, are all very important and help propel development, especially in the first 18 months of life. So, it’s never too early to start any of these activities and give your child a head start.
There is a difference between setting a placement mat in front of your child versus your cell phone. When your little one is watching their favorite cartoon, it can often be a one-dimensional experience. And,although it might keep them engaged, it doesn’t always offer the opportunity for interaction.
It’s More than a Mat
While we’re big on the ease and convenience our placement mat offers, we also target several different areas of development through multidimensional interaction. Our mat is specifically designed to give your baby the chance to learn and grow as they play, eat, and draw.
By ending the toddler toss, your little one gets more playtime with their toys. Which means more time for stimulation.
And when it comes to developing motor skills, our non-slip surface keeps food on the mat longer, fostering self-feeding. Another bonus — our silicone mat is great for protection against germs. So, your baby can eat and explore freely.
Its unique design also strengthens problem-solving skills and hand-eye coordination. Just when your baby thinks they’re going to launch their toy across the room, they’ll quickly notice it bounce back because it’s attached to tethers. Most little ones try to toss it a few more times before they realize that their toys aren’t going anywhere. This back and forth helps to strengthen their understanding of movement and spatial relationships.
In addition to learning about cause and effect, from their unsuccessful toy tossing, the silicone texture allows your baby to use washable markers directly on the mat, which is also great for color recognition.
Closer to their first birthday, babies begin to pull up objects to get themselves in standing position. We suggest placing the mat on a mirror or window to aid their physical development. As your baby tries to stand up and reach the mat, this helps build their little core muscles and strengthen their legs.
With so much research out there, it’s hard to determine what’s the best product to boost your baby’s development. The great news is that there are a variety of toys on the market compatible with our placement mat and can be attached to its tethers for optimal learning.
Even if you don’t have any toys handy, our mat can be used by itself. Babies love grabbing at the tethers and feeling the mats smooth surface. This also improves their sensory development as they interact with different textures.
If you’ve got one of our mats—congratulations! You’ve not only ended the toddler toss but you’ve also taken one big step in improving your baby’s development.
And for that, we think you should take a moment to let go of the mom guilt and pat yourself on the back.