When you want your child to do something he may not be excited about doing (homework, a chore, cello practice) negotiate a time with him that he will do it. E.g. Your child is playing with leggos on the floor. You say, "You need to practice piano. Would you like to do it now or in ten minutes? Okay, in 10 minutes it will be 5:30." (work on this)
Put out a banana, tooth picks, raisins, and a knife. Let your kids cut up the banana, decorate it with raisins pierced by toothpicks, and then eat the banana.
Build a tent out of chairs and blankets -let the kids hide or play in it.
Move the high chair outside.
Give the kids a small area of their own in the main living space of the home. Make it cozy. Fill it with pillows and books, and let them have their own space to cool out.
Give your kids a watering can and them water the grass or plants outside. Take a paintbrush to the park and let them"paint" the wooden structures with water.
Let the kids play dress up with your clothes. Keep a dress up basket . Put in all the old handbags, scarves, hats, gloves, and prom dresses you don't know what to do with.
Hide pennies in the yard and let the kids have a treasure hunt.
Take a sheet, hang it on the wall and let your kids paint a mural.
Make a bubble bath with shampoo and get in with your toddler.
Give your kids pillow cases and let them jump around the house in them.
Give your kids paper and glue or staples and let them make chains to decorate the house for the holidays.
While your kids are watching TV, instead of potato chips or pretzels put carrot, cucumber and celery sticks on plates in front of them and watch their vegetable consumption soar.
A Time to Take Measure
Give your kids measuring tape and let them measure themselves, each other, you, the furniture and anything else that strikes their fancy.
To keep young children busy, give them a flashlight and put them in a darkened room.
When you're changing your baby, let her be without her diaper for as long as possible. It's good to expose her bottom to some fresh air. Notice how much freer her leg movements are when she's diaper-less. If you're worried about wetting, place a diaper pad under her.
To keep you baby or toddler busy while you're on the phone, create a phone box with:
* empty spool threads
* a baby hair brush
* a small mirror
* a board book
* an old or toy phone
* a little change purse
* and anything else that would safely amuse your child
Keep this box on a high shelf and bring it down ONLY when you are on the phone.