What does my baby see?

People often ask me what does their baby see or what types of toys they should buy to stimulate this sense.  The visual system is the last to develop yet can have such a large impact on overall development including language, cognition, and motor skills.  Our sensory system is not only the genetic codes but also the experiences we are exposed to.  An article I recently reviewed on visual system development discussed this: to promote healthy visual development for babies at 40 weeks or later incorporate the following light ON objects (not direct light), focus, attention, novelty or change, movement, and at the 2 or 3 month mark add colors.  And like our other systems it requires the appropriate amount of experience for it to grow.  But what is the appropriate experience? Your baby loves your face so have fun with this, show them your face about 10-12 inches away, then try things like moving your face horizontally and vertically and from here work on hiding it and popping back up (YES like in Peekaboo).  If  you have someone else with you switch off doing this so baby gets to see the novelty of a new face.   So long as baby is making good eye contact we know they are engaged and happy.   

Sarah Laryea