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Another way to make baby bathtime mean more is to use it as a time for your little one to also learn and discover as she grows. Playing in the bath with your toddler and providing her with lots of props like pitchers, cups and books boosts her learning and nurtures her bond with you.

Your baby develops self-confidence when she can take care of herself and her ducky, and when she figures out how to pop the bubbles. Her thinking skills are boosted as she uses her imagination while playing pretend, and when she makes connections between what she sees in books and her own “real” life. She builds language skills and the muscles in her fingers and hands when she turns the pages of the book and learns new words as you read together.

Social-Emotional Development

What you can do what your child is learningAsk your toddler if she’d like to try washing herself.That she can take care of herself and that she is a good helper.Delight in your toddler’s discoveries and accomplishments. Let her know what a good job she does, for example, cleaning and taking care of her ducky.That she is important and capable.Help her cope with transitions by giving her notice before bath time ends and letting her take a favorite toy with her.That her feelings are important and that you will help her manage difficult situations.

Language and Thinking Skills

What you can do what your child is learningExplore bath books together. Invite her to point to familiar objects. Show her the connection between what she sees in the book and things in her “real” world.New words and to love books and reading, anytime, anywhere.Talk with your toddler about what you are doing together during bath time. Ask her questions: Is ducky thirsty? Does ducky need to get washed?That she is a good communicator. That she can develop her own ideas.Help your toddler become a good problem-solver; for example, by guiding her in how to soap up the sponge or find the page she’s looking for in her book.That she can tackle the challenges she faces.

Physical Development

What you can doWhat your child is learning Offer your toddler lots of different safe objects to explore in the bath.How to use her fingers and hands to make things work, such as grasping the pitcher firmly and dunking it in the water before pouring.Notice the way she uses her body to make things happen, like popping the bath bubbles.That she has a good, strong, body that can do so many great things. This builds positive self-esteem.

Remember, part of keeping bathtime fun is making sure your baby is safe. NEVER leave a baby alone in the bath. Not even for a second. So gather all the things you will need for the bath beforehand and let the phone ring over to voicemail. Also, be sure to set your water heater below 120 degrees to help prevent the possibility of scalding.

Bathing Baby

Important steps for bathing your baby.

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You know never to leave your child unattended in the bath, but what are some other ways to keep her safe? BabyCenter® shares some bathtime baby care safety tips.

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