Infants' Love of Faces

Delivery Method: 

Infants are fascinated with the human face. Two eyes, a nose, and a mouth cause infants to stare, and later, to touch and grasp. Parents often allow infants to probe, pull, and pinch their faces. Surely, these are joyful experiences for all involved. Intimate face-to-face exchanges also help form the foundation of social interactions. They provide an opportunity for the adult or older child to scaffold the infant’s first experiences with turn taking, and allow the infant to begin understanding himself as an active play partner. How might we make the infant's exploration of the face more interesting?

In this Videative, a teacher scaffolds an infant's experience by changing what she does with her face. Hal reaches up to touch his teacher’s mouth. Watch how the teacher rewards his action by kissing his hand. Hal moves his hand away but then quickly brings it back to her mouth to receive more kisses. With his left hand, he then reaches over to touch her nose. Hal may believe if his teacher’s mouth rewards his touch with kisses, then her nose may do something pleasurable to his left hand. However, a nose is not animated like a mouth. What ways do you think Hal’s teacher will invent to maintain their interaction and encourage his continued exploration of her face?

Keywords: Infants, Body, Child-Teacher, Movement, Grasping, Exploration, videative

Length of videative: 9 paragraphs, 6 video subclips

Length of stand-alone master video clip: 2 minutes, 28 seconds