Faces of Fun: Teaching Newborns About Emotions with Games

facial expression games

Welcome to our article on teaching newborns about emotions through the power of play! As parents, we all want our little ones to grow up emotionally aware and capable of understanding and expressing their feelings. And what better way to achieve this than through engaging and interactive games?

Imagine this: It’s a sunny afternoon, and you’re sitting on the floor with your precious newborn, eager to bond and help them develop their emotional intelligence. You’ve heard about the importance of facial expression games in nurturing their emotional development, so you decide to give it a try.

You take a deep breath and bring your face close to theirs, making a silly face. At first, your baby seems surprised, unsure of what to make of it. But as you continue, they start to giggle, a tiny smile spreading across their face. In that moment, you realize the power of play in teaching them about emotions.

Now, let’s dive into the fascinating world of newborn play and discover how we can use playtime to help our babies recognize and understand the different emotions they experience. We’ll explore various game ideas and activities that can make playtime not only fun but also instrumental in their emotional development. Ready to embark on this exciting journey with us?

Games and Activities to Teach Young Children About Emotions

Teaching young children about emotions is crucial for their social-emotional development. By engaging in games and activities that focus on recognizing and expressing emotions, children can enhance their emotional awareness, empathy, and self-regulation skills.

Feelings ID

One effective activity to help children recognize and name different emotions is Feelings ID. This game involves generating a list of feelings and categorizing them as either good or not so good. By discussing various emotions and their associated behaviors, children can gain a better understanding of their own feelings and those of others.

Feeling Dice Game

The Feeling Dice Game is another engaging activity to explore emotions. This game utilizes clear acrylic photo cubes with drawings or photos of different emotions. Children roll the dice, identify the feeling depicted, and share personal experiences related to that emotion. This encourages open communication about emotions and allows children to learn from each other’s perspectives.

“How Would You Feel If…”

Playing “How Would You Feel If…” is a great way to spark discussions about emotions. In this game, children are presented with various scenarios and asked how they would feel in each situation. This activity helps children develop empathy by encouraging them to consider the emotions of others and explore different perspectives.

Reading and Discussing Books About Feelings

Books are a valuable resource for teaching children about emotions. Choose age-appropriate books that focus on different feelings and engage in discussions about the characters’ emotions. This can help children relate the story to their own experiences and further develop their emotional vocabulary.

Emotion Charades

Emotion Charades is a fun and interactive game that allows children to act out various emotions non-verbally. By observing facial expressions, body language, and gestures, other players can guess the emotion being depicted. This game promotes emotional recognition and encourages children to express their feelings in creative ways.

Feeling Face Bingo Boards

Creating Feeling Face Bingo Boards is an enjoyable activity for children to practice recognizing and matching facial expressions with specific emotions. Each board can include different facial expressions, and players can mark the corresponding emotion when it is called out. This game enhances children’s ability to identify emotions through facial cues.

Puppet Play and Feelings Collage

Puppet play and feelings collage provide creative outlets for children to explore their emotions and share their thoughts and concerns. With puppets, children can act out different scenarios and express a range of emotions. Feelings collage allows children to use art materials to create visual representations of their emotions, encouraging self-expression and reflection.

By engaging in these facial expression games, recognizing emotions, and talking about emotions, children can develop a greater understanding of their own feelings and the feelings of others. These activities foster emotional intelligence and equip children with essential skills to navigate social interactions and build meaningful connections.

Enhancing Emotional Development Through Crafts and Games

Crafts and games offer interactive and enjoyable ways for children to learn about emotions. With feelings stampers, children can explore a range of different emotions while creating unique artwork. By making a feeling spinner using paper plates, children can engage in discussions about various emotional faces, expanding their understanding of emotions. Emotional eggs provide a hands-on activity where children can mix and match different expressions, helping them identify and differentiate feelings.

The “Make a Face” activity involves creating faces with different eye and mouth cut-outs, encouraging conversations about emotions and expressions. Children can use the emotions wheel, a customizable tool, to draw their own emotions and initiate engaging discussions about their feelings. These crafts and games not only spark creativity but also facilitate the development of self-awareness in children.

Participating in these activities allows children to strengthen their emotional vocabulary, express their feelings, and build resilience in handling emotional situations. Through crafts and games, children can develop a deeper understanding of their emotions, enhancing their emotional intelligence and overall well-being.


Why is play important for a newborn’s emotional development?

Play is essential for a newborn’s emotional development as it allows them to explore, express, and communicate their feelings. Through play, newborns can learn to recognize different facial expressions and develop a sense of self-regulation.

How can parents play a role in their baby’s emotional development?

Parents play a crucial role in their baby’s play and development by engaging in back-and-forth interactions and making faces. Babies exhibit various emotions through body language and cues, such as eye contact, smiles, and reaching out.

What are some play ideas to encourage baby emotions?

Play ideas to encourage baby emotions include making music together, engaging in messy play, using puppets or toys to explain emotions, playing with soft blocks, and playing peekaboo. It’s important for parents to follow their baby’s lead during play to ensure they are interested and enjoying themselves.

When should I seek help if my baby has difficulty with emotions?

Seeking help from a healthcare professional may be necessary if a baby regularly avoids eye contact, has difficulty understanding or expressing emotions, or rarely communicates their feelings.

Why is teaching young children about emotions crucial?

Teaching young children about emotions is crucial for their social-emotional development. Activities like feelings ID and feeling dice game can help children recognize and name different emotions.

What are some games and activities to teach young children about emotions?

Games and activities include “How Would You Feel If…”, reading and discussing books about feelings, playing emotion charades, and creating feeling face bingo boards. These activities aim to help children express their emotions, develop empathy, and understand the behaviors associated with different feelings.

What crafts and games can enhance emotional development in children?

Crafts and games using feelings stampers, feeling spinner, emotional eggs, make a face, and emotions wheel provide interactive and enjoyable ways for children to learn about emotions. By participating in these activities, children can strengthen their emotional vocabulary, express their feelings, and build resilience in handling emotional situations.

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