Build a Block Family
Family photos enhance a child’s sense of belonging. Use photos dotted around your house to start conversations about your own childhood, your family heritage and fond memories you have of being together. These photo blocks for young babies are a fantastic option as you baby can grasp them and pull them closer than they can an album or a photo frame.
Gather photos of your loved ones and people familiar to your baby. Safely sticky tape the photos to the flat side of a chunky block. You might wish to laminate the photo first, but be sure to trim and round off any sharp plastic edges. Glue might work too, but as your baby is likely to mouth these blocks, ensure the glue is safe and non-toxic.
When your child looks at the photo or picks up a block to examine it further, continue your discussion and use or introduce words or names of people and talk about who they are and what they do. This will help your baby to develop language skills and it gifts them with a greater sense of identity and meaning about themselves and their family.
Older children enjoy the addition of photos in their block play too. They may choose to use these as they imagine and role play. You might want to add the person’s name for further literacy engagement and depending on your child’s interests, you could add photos or magazine cutouts of other familiar objects such as trees, buildings, animals etc.
This post was inspired by the work of Assistant Centre Manager Tracey Stoermer, and Educators Haley Hanley and Chloe Johnson at Guardian Sherwood.