Preemies and infants are bored. Forget the American adult bias that infants are blank slates. They are thinking and problem solving, just as we all do, with all the assessment skills and conclusions we have and probably more because theirs is pure and without the influence, fear and worry acquired during childhood.
You can play silent mind games with them and see that this is true.
The first time I posted this design on the outside of the isolette of a baby who was 2 weeks old and now 29 weeks gestation. She was not supposed to be born for almost 3 months. I watched as her eyes outlined each side and compared it to the other, again and again, over and over. She would just keep doing it and I had to feed the next baby so I began to time her. Twenty three minutes.
Then after a few days of this, when she was asleep, I rotated the card 1/3 of a turn and stood, waiting for her to wake up. She opened her eyes, looked at it, frowned, cocked her head, straightened her head, pulled her neck back, pushed her face closer… the classic ‘double-take’ sequence. She had immediately identified the problem, checked her facts, verified what she was seeing and accepted it. She weighed less than 3 pounds.
So I did this for at least a hundred babies over the years. Stable feeder /grower babies, all with the same results. The attention span time was from 18 to 26 minutes.
We are all born genius.