It can be daunting, finding yourself suddenly alone with a newborn to entertain – especially if it’s your first time. No matter how inventive you are there’s only so many ways you can play peek-a-boo. It’s not just finding things to excite and stimulate your tiny one that can present a challenge – being on your own with only your gorgeous bub for company can make you feel surprisingly isolated too.

Though you might justifiably be tempted to live in your PJs and curl up in your lovely baby bubble; getting out and about is a must for staving off the boredom, baby blues or, more seriously, post natal depression. Fortunately there’s plenty you can do with newborns in Clapham! Attending classes and groups is a great way to meet new friends with similar aged babies but also helps build on your baby’s confidence and natural curiosity.

Hartbeeps Baby Bells is the only baby music class in Clapham that has been specifically designed, by experts, for newborns. It helps new mums and dads bond with their little ones, take care of themselves and re-learn how to play! Baby Bells – suitable from 6 weeks to sitting confidently – uses elements of baby yoga, baby massage, signing and baby calming techniques to take babies and their grown-ups on a magical, musical adventure through Baby Land. It’s all set to a stunning soundtrack of lullabies and remixed nursery rhymes and is bought to life with sparkly parachutes, wacky puppets and props you won’t see anywhere else.

As a sensory and baby development class for newborns Baby Bells takes in the key principles of the governments Early Years Foundation Stages guidelines and aims to guide babies towards their major early milestones. But most importantly it’s a gentle, lovely, fun activity that gets you back into the world but also arms you with loads of great ideas to try when you’re back at home.

“I started coming to Baby Bells when Isla was six weeks old and it was incredible how much it helped us to bond” says Claire, 37, mum to Isla (now 14 months) “Also I didn’t do NCT and I didn’t know anyone with a baby I could talk to in the area but I met some wonderful girls at Hartbeeps and they’ve become some of my closest friends. Hartbeeps is still the best class I’ve been to!”

Hartbeeps South West London runs Baby Bells classes at the Jam Tree, Clapham (Mon & Tue 11.30am), The Devonshire, Balham (Mon 11.30am), The Katherine Low Settlement, Battersea High St (Wed 11.30am), The Battersea Arts Centre (Tue 2pm), The Railway, Streatham (Thu 11am) and the Balham Baptist Church (Fri 12.30pm). Find your nearest class at www.hartbeeps.com or contact anna-belle@hartbeeps.com to arrange your trial class. First class is only £5 – refunded if you sign up for the term!

Hartbeeps – winners of last year’s What’s On For… best post-natal activity also offers Baby Beeps classes – for babies sitting to walking – and Happy House classes – for toddlers and pre-schoolers to 5yrs old (siblings welcome).

 

Our beautiful newborn image was kindly provided by Manu of www.emanuelaredaschi.com. You can see more of her work here

 

Hartbeeps top 5 tips for entertaining a newborn “Parentease”Baby talk! It’s not just a silly, high pitched voice after all. The higher frequency, long vowels and simplified speech patterns really helps babies to focus and begin to understand you.Big faces Your baby has a very limited field of vision. Help him to see you by exaggerating your facial expressions and leaning close in to your little one. He will love it and may even try to copy you!Touch Never underestimate the power of touch, it makes babies feel loved, calms them down and builds their confidence. Maybe even consider a newborn massage course such as Northcote Baby Massage.

Tummy time So important for future development yet can be so hard to get right. Try rolling up a small towel and making a U shape. Pop this under your baby’s arms, under her chest, to help her lift her upper body and feel less helpless.

Bouncing A little gentle bouncing provides a great work out for the vestibular system which governs balance and coordination. Whether on your lap or in your arms, make sure little heads and necks are supported and have yourself a little boogie to the radio!

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