Okay, so your baby is still not crawling. Maybe he’s 5 months old, or just born….. we are all eager to see them crawl.
Okay, the first thing to realize is that a newborn put on the mother’s stomach will crawl up to suckle (often, if not mostly). So crawling is not that big a difficulty. However, if you are talking about crawling to actually get somewhere significant…. you’re going to soon wish he was getting into less things, but hey, here are some tips anyway.
- Put baby on stomach when awake. Really, there is no such thing as too much. Reassure, comfort, pick up, whatever, but if you’re putting the baby down awake, its the stomach that must be down. Really, a baby on the back is rather like a turtle on its shell. How will any crawling happen? Its definitely a learning by doing thing, and doing needs opportunity.
- Be excited about it: Be thrilled by the fact that baby is on the stomach. Praise, laugh, get all thrilled, and chances are that baby will think its a good thing after all. A great tool if the baby is still undecided about how this stomach thing is.
- Join your baby. On the floor. Yep. Go ahead, crawl yourself, and he may get some ideas.
- Use toys and stuff. Your baby may not even seem to notice them, but they have. Babies are smart and quite curious about stuff. He may not seem to show interest initially, but leave him quiet for a bit, and he’ll get all curious about the toy and want to get it. This needs crawling of course.
- Acknowledge efforts. Really, praise everything, even if baby has feet in the air. If he feels good about trying rather than feeling burdned by expectations he doesn’t understand, chances are that he’s going to want to spend time investigating this new experience.
- Interpret – interpret everything as success.. If baby waves hands and feet, he’s going to end up moving in some direction or the other – fabulous. Cheer!
Use firm surfaces. A soft fluffy something is only going to bunch and absorb all baby’s efforts and discourage him.
Leave arms and feet (particularly) bare and cover torso. This will give more grip to the parts that will push, and more slipperiness to the parts that will slide and make movement easier. Basically, what we are doing is simply creating an opportunity for the baby to discover that moving his limbs on the floor ends up moving his body. Once he gets that, start reorganizing your home to get rid of all baby-non-proof things at floor level…..