Object Permanence

March 5, 2018

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Object Permanence is the understanding that things continue to exist, even when they can’t be seen, heard, touched or smelled.   For the first few months of a baby’s life, if an object is out of baby’s sight, in their minds, it is simply gone.  As baby’s brain develops, he comes to realize that when things disappear, they aren’t gone forever.

At around 4 months of age, babies will begin to follow objects with their eyes.  As their vision develops, they begin reaching and grasping for things ~ even things that are partially hidden.   By 8-12 months of age, baby can remember where things are, even if they are fully hidden.

Here are some fun way to help your baby develop object permanence:

Play Peek-a-boo.   Hold a small towel in front of your face and call to baby.  As soon as he touches the towel, drop it and smile at him.  Try putting the towel on your head and having baby pull it off.  As baby grows, you can add layers for him to pull off.  Remember to keep calling to baby when you are out of sight.

Play Hide & Seek.  Show baby a toy, and as he watches, slowly pull part of the toy under a blanket.  Can he find it?  As baby grows, hide more and more of the toy until baby can find it when it is completely hidden.