At 11 months old, your baby is nearly a toddler! In fact, they may already be getting in some practice: taking their first steps and starting to throw tantrums when things don’t go their way.
So how do you keep your baby entertained at this time of transition? And what kind of activities for 11-month-olds are good for their development?
To get some ideas, take a look at our ten activities and games for 11-month-old babies.
Not only should they provide lots of fun, but they’re also great for your baby’s mobility, sensory exploration, language skills, and social skills.
Before we begin, let’s remind ourselves of some of the milestones your 11-month-old could be hitting around now.
11-month-old baby milestones
There are no hard-and-fast rules when it comes to baby development, but these are the kinds of things that your little one might be doing at 11 months old:
- Crawling, cruising, and climbing
- Walking (some babies may be taking their first steps)
- Mimicking the things you do
- Getting more adventurous (no drawer or cabinet is safe…)
- Fine-tuning those fine motor skills (they may even be using a spoon to feed themselves)
What words should my 11-month-old be saying?
Or you may have already heard one or two simple words, such as “mama,” “dog,” or “car.”
Their understanding of language is also coming along in leaps and bounds. They might be able to point to something familiar when you name it—for example, your pet cat or a ball.
How do I entertain my 11-month-old?
All you’ll need is a few toys, some everyday household items, and a touch of imagination.
Most of the 11 months old baby activities below can be done at home with just you and your little one.
But you might like to try some of them with a group of mamas and babies on a playdate, too.
10 fun activities for 11-month-old babies
1. Tunnel challenge
For this activity, you’ll need a collapsible play tunnel, or you can make your own tunnel from blankets or sheets and furniture.
Put a ball inside the tunnel. Then encourage your baby to crawl inside and push the ball out the other end.
This is a great way to strengthen their muscles and, at the same time, develop their problem-solving skills.
Don’t worry if your baby stops to play inside the tunnel for a while. Be patient and let them enjoy the exploration.
Once they’ve brought the ball out, give them a “Good job!” and put the ball back in the tunnel to repeat the exercise.
2. Copycat toys
At 11 months old, your baby is probably trying to copy many of the things you do.
Mimicking is a big part of how babies learn, so you can help them out by providing some toy versions of the things you use in your daily life.
These might include a play phone, kitchen, toolset, or even keys (why do babies find keys so fascinating?).
And, of course, some household items may be safe for your baby to play with.
Let them “make a cake” with a plastic mixing bowl and wooden spoon, for example.
3. Stacking champion
Some things to do with 11-month-old babies overlap with activities they’ve been enjoying for a few months already. (If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right?)
Stacking—with blocks, cups, or rings—is one of these.
Your baby may well be getting good at this now, but it continues to be great practice for their fine motor skills.
4. Reach for the toy
To prepare your baby for their first steps, you can encourage them to try standing independently.
Wait until they’re standing while holding on to a piece of furniture (ideally something soft, like the couch).
Then take a favorite toy and hold it near the hand that they’re supporting themselves with.
Hopefully, in their eagerness to grab the toy, your baby will remove their hand, and they’ll have to try and balance on their own two feet.
When you first start this game, their hand will probably rocket back to the couch again straight away.
But after a while, their balance should improve, and you’ll find they can stand unsupported for a longer period of time.
5. Dance party
Learning activities for 11-month-olds can be fun for mama and baby.
Why not play some of your favorite tunes (or sing some baby classics like “Old MacDonald”) and have a dance party with your little one?
You can gently support them in a standing position, with their feet on the ground, and encourage them to move their body in time to the music.
This is another excellent activity for preparing your baby to stand independently. And the music makes it great for sensory stimulation, too.
6. Bath-time fun
Bath-time doesn’t have to be just about getting clean.
Try entertaining your baby with bath toys in different colors and textures (waterproof bath books, squeezable animals, plastic pails).
You could even help them sort the toys into different categories.
And don’t forget the bubble bath!
Show your baby how to stir up the water and make more bubbles, and encourage them to try grabbing a bubble with their hands.
7. Roll the ball
You can use developmental activities for 11-month-olds to get them interested in your hobbies.
If you’re a big sports fan, you could try this ball-rolling activity with your baby.
Simply sit opposite them and show them how you can both take turns rolling a ball to each other (taking turns is an essential social skill for them to learn).
Once they’ve got the hang of catching the ball when it’s passed straight to them, you can start rolling it slightly off to one side.
Your baby will have to turn their torso to reach the ball, which helps to exercise lots of different muscles.
8. Home-made playdough
A simple homemade playdough (flour, warm water, vegetable oil, and salt) can provide a great tactile activity for your baby.
Sit them in their high chair and show them how to squidge and roll the playdough with their hands. They might enjoy making hand or footprints, too.
9. Outdoor explorer
Let your baby’s curiosity run wild by giving them the chance to explore an outdoor space.
That might be a close encounter with snails and twigs in your backyard, or it might be digging around in the sandbox at your local playground. It’s all teaching them something new about the world.
What to do with an 11-month-old baby when you’re both in the mood for some quiet time?
You can’t beat a good storybook.
Your baby will enjoy looking at all the colorful pictures, and you can help develop their language skills by pointing out the things they can see: “train,” “horse,” “cookie.”
We hope you’ve had fun with these activities. Not long to go until toddlerhood…
👶 Read next: 16 Fun Activities for 1-Year-Olds