Eye contact is an essential part of communication and should be established before engaging with the child. Ways to obtain this include:
- Hold objects been named next to your face as you label them
- See if the child notices when you are been silly (e.g. a spoon balanced on the nose). If not, get them to look at you and allow them to remove an object or “stop the silliness”.
Play “pee-ka-boo” games with the child
- where you hide your face and wait for them to respond to you. This assists with gaining their attention for the interaction too.
- Put stickers on your nose and encourage the child to remove. If you don’t have stickers, you can put a small dollop of cream.
- Allow your child to brush your hair, or wash face or put face paint on you to encourage face to face interactions.
- Be on the same level as the child, so that you are face-to-face.
- Call their name or gently turn their head in order to get their attention.
- Stop and wait for eye contact to be established prior to starting your interactions with them.
In all interactions, do not force the child to give you eye contact. A child is more likely to look at you when they feel relaxed and having fun.
1. Haba – Fire Station – 13 Pieces
2. Crayola – Small Playset – Roll and Cut
3. Tigex – Cord Pull Clown Fish – Red
4. Smurfs – Rattle Toy – Pack of 6
5. Fiesta Crafts – Ringaling Giraffe