Why Kids Think Peek-a-Boo is so Damn Interesting

Another confession. Here it goes… For Christmas, I didn’t buy my kid anything. Not a single toy or book.  And not just because I’m into the less is more on the toy front, but because everyone else pretty much spoiled him rotten. Love my family and how much they love him…

I’m not judging myself. He won’t remember Christmas 2015 as the year that Mom and Dad stiffed him (I hope!).

He did, however, end up with a stuffed Elmo as part of his Christmas treasures. And when Elmo isn’t sitting in the chair next to him during dinner or joining him for a story on the couch, his other favorite thing to do is play Peek-a-boo.

Why is Peek-a-boo so damn interesting to kids?

It starts when they’re young… Like, really young. Around 3 months or so, you’re probably getting some smiles from your little one by just covering your face for a brief second and then popping back with big smiles as your babe squeals in delight.

Why Do Babies Love it?

Well, the idea of object permanence hasn’t been established quite yet. At these early stages, they are simply amazed that something can reappear after being gone. They’re learning about existence.

Now as baby grows, they’re obviously learning more, developing, and well… getting smarter. So around 8 months of age, they know to look for the object. So if you try to play Peek-a-boo and keep your face covered, your baby will likely try to pry your hands away to get that big smile.

Can Peek-a-boo still be fun after 8 months??

Of course! As they start to establish object permanence, they begin to set expectations. When these expectations change, new learning patterns are established. In other words… keep them guessing. Keep them surprised.

For example, Elmo has been lurking around the side of the couch, under beds, and behind other stuffed animals in his great efforts to play Peek-a-boo. And it’s hilarious. Especially as our little guy expects one thing, he magically appears either under, above, or behind the last place he was.

Peek-a-boo and all it’s surprises will probably continue to be fun until about 2. Then you just graduate to more complex games… like hide-and-seek ;p

What's the best Peek-a-Boo reaction you get?

Comment below and tell us!


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