Play Tips for the Baby Einstein™ Sensory Play Space™

Baby Einstein™ Sensory Play Space™ baby gym

Fun Ideas to Encourage Baby’s Cognitive and Physical Development

The 5 senses are baby’s first tools for exploring their new environment. That’s why we were inspired to design a gym that uses the power of sensory experiences to encourage their developmental journey. The Sensory Play Space™ Newborn-to-Toddler Discovery Gym promotes your little one’s physical and cognitive growth, while using touch, sight, and sound to discover the world around them.

To help you and baby get the most out of your time together and to explore the gym’s full range of activities, we’ve broken everything down, stage by stage, corner by corner, with tips for keeping playtime fun, naturally-motivated, and productive – and most importantly, for keeping your little one’s curiosity ignited during the entire first year and beyond.



Monthly Achievements: 0+ months

Look, touch, and listen corner of the Baby Einstein™ Sensory Play Space™ baby gym

Baby begins to work towards these sensory goals:

  • Physical: Muscle Strengthening, Vision Development
  • Cognitive: Auditory and Voice Recognition

Areas of the mat to focus on from 0+ months:

1. Look, Touch & Listen Corner

Areas of development: Neck, Core, and Arm Strength; Vision
What to do: Keep baby engaged and motivated during tummy time with high-contrast colors and new sounds and textures. Notice how your baby’s facial expression changes when Mom touches the textured tentacles of the octopus. As you approach Month 3 together, encourage visual development by introducing the high-contrast prop pillow to tummy time. Because baby can only see black, white & gray first, high-contrast objects help their little eyes adjust to the world around them.

2. Open Mat

Areas of development: Voice Recognition
What to do: Quietly talk, sing, and rub baby’s back during tummy time, flipping the fabric tabs up and down and describing what you see. This is your chance to be their first teacher. Your little one will begin to recognize your voice and differentiate it from others. These early days are especially important for bonding and sharing little moments of discovery (using statements like, “Wow, the leaves are green and you found them!”) will help baby associate you with learning.

3. Red Rattle

Areas of development: Auditory Recognition, Neck Strength
What to do: Gently shake the rattle and encourage baby to reach and look towards the direction of the sound. Babies likely won’t yet be able to grip the rattle independently, but their curiosity will be piqued by the noise and they’ll begin to wonder how it relates to what your hands are doing.

About Baby Einstein

As their eyes adjust, what other high-contrast patterns can you point out to baby around your home?


Monthly Achievements: 3+ months

Reach, baby, reach! corner of the Baby Einstein™ Sensory Play Space™ baby gym

Baby begins to work towards these sensory goals:

  • Physical: Touch, Eye Tracking, Vision Development
  • Cognitive: Cause & Effect

Areas of the mat to focus on from 3+ months:

1. Reach, Baby, Reach! Corner

Areas of development: Touch
What to do: Place your little one on their tummy and encourage them to reach for and grip the colorful tags. Gently run their fingers along the different textured strips and see how they react to the unique sensations of each.

2. Musical Toy Bar

Areas of development: Eye Tracking, Cause & Effect
What to do: Position baby on their back underneath the bar and let them bat and kick at the toys above. At this age, babies can focus on objects 3-4 feet away, so their eyes may begin to curiously follow the objects as they move. Activate the lights and watch your little one’s eyes track the movements of the lights as they dance with the music.

3. High-Contrast Color & Shape Flash Cards

Areas of development: Vision
What to do: Hold the cards in front of baby during tummy time and name the colors and shapes on each. Though babies still prefer black & white images at this point, their vision is actively developing and high-contrast colors will hold their curiosity longer.

About Baby Einstein

What other unique textures can you introduce to baby? Soft and hard? Smooth and rough? Cool and warm?


Monthly Achievements: 6+ months

Grasp & Hook corner of the Baby Einstein™ Sensory Play Space™ baby gym

Baby begins to work towards these sensory goals:

  • Physical: Mouth Exploration, Motor Skills
  • Cognitive: Facial Recognition

Areas of the mat to focus on from 6+ months:

1. Grasp & Hook Corner

Areas of development: Mouth Exploration, Fine Motor Skills
What to do: Use the grasp and hook play features to encourage grasping. As baby practices hooking them onto the ribbon, name their colors and shapes out loud to help connect the dots between what they’re touching and what you’re saying.

2. Monthly Milestone Blocks

Areas of development: Gross Motors Skills
What to do: Roll blocks just out of reach during tummy time to motivate your little one to start making bigger movements. As they scoot towards the blocks, they may discover other parts of the mat. If they get curious about something else, it’s ok! Sensory development is a journey and it’s important to explore all the sights, sounds, and textures along the way.

3. Mirror

Areas of development: Facial Recognition
What to do: Hold the mirror up to your baby and let them study what they see. Repeat their name as they look at their own face. Point to facial features on yourself, and then on baby’s face, and then on their reflection. (For example: nose, nose, nose!) The funnier and more distinct the faces you make, the stronger the link they’ll form between what you’re doing and what they’re seeing in the mirror.

About Baby Einstein

What other engaging objects can you place slightly out of reach during tummy time to catch your little one's curiosity and motivate them to explore?


Monthly Achievements: 9+ months

Hide, Seek & Find corner of the Baby Einstein™ Sensory Play Space™ baby gym

Baby begins to work towards these sensory goals:

  • Physical: Hand-Eye Coordination
  • Cognitive: Language, Concept of “Where”

Areas of the mat to focus on from 9+ months:

1. Hide, Seek & Find Corner

Areas of development: Concept of “Where”
What to do: Play peekaboo with the red bird finger puppet, hiding it behind your back, and then revealing it again once your little one starts looking for it. To build listening skills, show baby that the bird makes a chirping sound, hide the bird, and watch them track the sound. These exercises help baby discover that just because an object is out of sight, that doesn’t mean it is gone. To introduce the idea of “in and out,” place the bird in its pocket. Ask baby, “Where did the bird go?” and encourage them to look for it. Once they find the partly hidden bird, try hiding it under a blanket to grow their curiosity beyond the mat.

2. Monthly Milestone Blocks

Areas of development:Hand-Eye Coordination
What to do: Take turns stacking the blocks on top of the other, knocking them down, and then stacking again. At this age, babies will likely start having more control over where they throw things, so passing the blocks back and forth with you and even a third person will help develop their aim.

3. Animal & Nature Flash Cards

Areas of development: Language
What to do: Point to the cards and name the animals and nature on each. Describe their colors, patterns, and the environments where they live (Ex: The tiger is orange and has stripes. The tiger lives in the jungle). Make sure to flip the cards to both sides, so that baby can see the animal photos and their corresponding characters. That way, they will begin to understand that the illustrated characters represent real animals in nature.

About Baby Einstein

What other things around your home and in the environment move in opposite directions? In and out? Backwards and forwards? Up and down?

About Baby Einstein

Capture Baby’s Curiosity!

The Sensory Play Space™ not only grows with baby, but also provides a photo op to document, celebrate, and share developmental achievements. Use the Monthly Milestone Blocks as an easy way to capture your baby’s curious journey, inch by inch, month by month.

Share your photos using hashtag #babymilestone