Your kitten needs to play in order to develop her natural instincts. Join in her games and you’ll form a bond that'll last a lifetime.
It’s mostly her mother's job to stimulate her behavioural development but, as surrogate mother, your role is important too. So make time to play with her. To start with, buy her a few toys, like a furry mouse and a ball, anything she can play with without hurting herself (and nothing that can be easily swallowed). Or get creative. Something as simple as a paper ball can provide endless hours of fun. Another good idea is to hang something on a length of wool and keep moving it as she tries to catch it. Just make sure that she can’t chew or swallow the wool when you've finished playing.
Some kittens enjoy hiding, just to catch you out when you least expect it. This is perfectly natural but it's best not to encourage it unless you want to get frights for years to come. Ignore her if she does it and she'll soon cease to find it fun.
She’s just looking for a little stimulation
When your kitten's playing with you, she's living out the natural instincts her ancestors used in the wild. Playtime helps her tone her muscles and improves her circulation. In fact, it’s great all round.
Kittens will always follow their hunting instinct and have a natural need to roam about. Even if she loves the routine and safety of her home and territory, her senses will still need to be stimulated. Otherwise, she can become stressed out and aggressive. If she's acting up, try to divert her aggression onto a toy (and never offer your hand as an alternative).
Bring out the hunter in her, not the fighter
Playing with your kitten is the best way to calm her down. Anything that helps her to hunt and to scratch is great. Attach a paper ball to a thread and drag it round the room and over furniture.. She’ll definitely want to hunt that one down.
Your kitten can learn a lot from playing with you. By creating different situations, you can let her know when certain behaviour is unacceptable and, if she’s just arrived in your home and feeling timid, it’s a great way to get her used to her new environment.