Ball play builds the imagination:


  • Pretend that the ball is a juicy delicious apple and you are eating it.
    What else can you and your child pretend?
  • Ask an older sibling or adult to help you hold a blanket by the corners. Place the ball in the centre of the blanket and shake it. Say, Popcorn, popcorn, pop pop pop, Popcorn go, Popcorn Stop!
  • Hide the ball in a hamper full of clothes and help your baby find it.
  • (Pretend you are digging for treasure).
  • Have a tea party with your child, pretend the ball is guest.

Ball play teaches communication and social skills

  • Play peek-a-boo with the ball. Say, Where is Mommy?and Were I am!?
  • Roll and throw the ball back and forth. Turn-taking and waiting are important skills needed for communication. Say, Tommy's turn and baby is turning
  • Throw and catch the ball to each other.
  • Hide the ball under a hat or bowl and lift. Sing: (quietly) little ball, little ball, where are you? ?(Then the surprise!) here I am here I am, how do you do?? Sing slowly and pause, notice how your baby anticipates what is coming next.

Ball play advances physical development

  • Your baby will explore this toy with all his senses. Encourage him to touch it, mouth it, and hold it in his hands.
  • Take turns throwing or placing the ball into a container such as a cardboard box or washing basket.
  • Set up two or three plastic baby bottles and roll the ball to knock them over. Sit close to the bottles if you need to.
  • Go outside to play. Kick or throw the ball back and forth.

Ball play helps kids work through emotions

  • Before children can express their feelings with words, they express them through play. Show your child different ways to play with a ball, gently throwing it against a wall or bouncing it as hard as you can on the ground to make it go very high. Observe your child playing to gather clues about her feelings.

Your role when playing ball with your child

  • Here is a chance for you to give your child control over a part of his life. Tell your child that you like the way he plays and follow his lead. When you play with your child in this way you are showing him that you are interested in his world and he is important to you.
  • A ball is such a simple toy that can grow with your child. Joyful and positive play begins with knowing your child and valuing their individuality. Your child is unique!