Keeping tabs on our young children can suck parents’ energy. We want them to have the opportunity to explore, but how might we limit the area in which they move? For those crawling and learning to walk here’s an idea:
Our daughter-in-law used wooden railed sections, similar to the old playpen type, but put together, yielding a larger area for their tot. It is in the area where she home schools the older children. Interesting and safe toys are in his reach while at same time, he is not isolated.
An idea for children beyond toddlerhood: Get a timer that dings or flashes, and is easy to use. Give your child a choice, if possible, of one of two activities that can be done at a table.
Express to your child confidence that she/he can stay at the table until the bell rings. Make it easy at first–perhaps just 5 minutes or less. Then give enthusiastic comments once the bell rings and allow them to get up. This should not be punishment, but rather a reasonable request to help your child spend some time at a task, especially if they initially tend not to.
Use short intervals at first, until your child can easily accomplish this. Then increase the time gradually over a few weeks. If they seem to find it impossible to sit for a given duration, reduce the time so they meet success. Always give some encouragement when they are done–a smile and pat on the back can be rewarding.
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