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Session notes for Early days DVD Stages: Birth to 2 months Stages: 3 to 6 months


Even very young babies can communicate to let their mums and dads know what they need and want. It’s up to their parents to learn their special language. This is called ‘reading baby’s cues’.

Learning about baby’s cues

Recognising the cues and understanding what they’re signalling can be a steep learning curve for new parents. And if their attempts to soothe baby are unsuccessful, it can add more stress to sometimes tired and anxious parents.

Ask the whānau:

  • How have you been doing with figuring out what baby needs?
  • How do you approach it?

Learning from other parents

It can be helpful hearing from other dads and mums about how they worked out what baby was trying to communicate.

Watch ‘The early days’ video clip 'When your baby cries'

Getting familiar with the video yourself (before you watch it with the family) will help you to support the discussion better.

Arrange things with the whānau ahead of time so that you have the right technology to view the video.

After watching the video together, use some of these questions to prompt discussion with the whānau, and to help them understand baby’s crying:

  • What did these parents learn about their babies?
  • Why do babies cry?
  • What are they trying to tell us?
  • What can parents do?
  • How do we learn to understand them?
  • What have you experienced?
  • What do your baby’s cries sound like?
  • What do their cries mean?
  • Do you have any other ideas about baby’s crying?

How does this topic relate to the SKIP resources?

Baby Wall Frieze - Kōrero mai, e aroha ana koe ki ahau - tell me you love me

Six things children need - Te aroha me te mahana - love and warmth 

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