Life with a toddler can be a rollercoaster. One minute they're happy and laughing, the next they're screaming on the floor. Two minutes later they're all cuddly and lovely and then before you know it they're throwing everything out of the drawers refusing to listen when you say stop. It can be really hard but there are a few things that you can do to make it much easier and less stressful. So you can enjoy more of those wonderful moments and have less of those tear your hair out moments. This first strategy is particularly helpful if you find yourself following your toddler like a hawk constantly telling them to “Stop”; “Don't touch that”, “Put that down”, “Leave it alone!”. This desire to touch and.
Play with everything they can get their hands on is how your toddler learns about the world around them and it's vital for their physical, social and cognitive development. While it's frustrating for you to have to constantly tell them to stop. What you might not realize is it's actually really frustrating for them too. Imagine if you're surrounded by really interesting things and every time you went to look at one or touch it someone was hovering over you saying, “Put that down!”, “Step back you're too close” or “Don't touch it!”. Constantly being told what not to do is frustrating for everyone. In this situation what you need to do is make changes to the environment. We want.
To make the environment suitable for your toddler not make your toddler try to fit in an unsuitable environment. And you do this by creating a yes space for your toddler. This is a safe area where they can play and explore freely without you needing to keep a constant watch. Creating a yes space might involve toddler proofing a room by removing or placing items that they shouldn't touch like anything breakable or dangerous out of reach, setting up baby gates or using a playpen. Trust me I know it might be challenging to put away those cherished picture frames or move your favorite plants or ornaments but don't worry it's not a permanent change. Your toddler's brain is growing and learning at a rapid.
Speed and in time they will learn to manage their impulses around those breakable items that are in the house. But until then help them succeed by keeping those tempting items out of the designated yes space. For instance in our home our one-year-old can freely roam the ground floor which includes her siblings bedrooms, the dining room and the kitchen. Because she does have free range and I don't have the time to shadow her as she moves around there are no picture frames on coffee tables or breakable items within reach. But on the upper floor it's a different story. That's where we keep our photos, ornaments and the older kids textures and pencils and this is an area that she doesn't.
Have free access to. So when we're up there I do have to keep a close eye on her. So honestly we usually don't spend much playtime in that space at all. This next strategy might take a little getting used to but once you start using it regularly you'll notice how much easier it makes your daily life with your toddler. It involves just a little tweak in how you talk to them. The key is to focus on telling your toddler what to do rather than what not to do. Toddlers find it easier to understand what you want when you tell them what they're allowed to do rather than constantly pointing out what they shouldn't do. Let's take running indoors as an example. If you say to your toddler “Don't run” they.
Have to figure out two things. First that they shouldn't be running and then what they should be doing instead of running. But if you were just to say “Walking inside “, it's much clearer for them. You're removing the guesswork and just telling them straight up what they should do. This clear way of communicating not only makes it easier for your toddler to follow your instructions but it also lessens their frustrations from constantly hearing “no”, “don't” or “stop”. Plus it helps boost their self-esteem because they don't always feel like they're in trouble or doing something wrong. Next up we have a strategy which will help to keep your toddler's play environment exciting and stimulating as there's.
Always something new to explore and learn from. And this in turn will lead to longer more focused play sessions for your toddler and eliminates the need for you to constantly buy new toys. Here's how it works. Instead of letting your toddler play with all their toys at once, you rotate them. Pick out a set of toys for them to play with and then hide the rest and keep those hidden toys somewhere that your toddler can't see or reach like in a closet on a high shelf or in some storage bins. Then while your toddler is playing with these toys you want to watch for signs that they're getting bored with their current toys. This could be anything from playing more roughly than usual, complaining more than.
Usual or looking for other toys. When you notice these signs it's time for a toy swap. So bring out some of the toys you've stored away and put away the ones that they've been using. Rotating their toys in this way makes it feel like their toy box is constantly being updated. It feels like they're getting new toys each time even though they're just their old ones coming back into rotation. And this keeps playtime interesting for them. This next strategy is going to help make transitions a little bit easier for your toddler. You're going to notice that moving from one activity to another can be really challenging for them. And this is because it involves a lot of brainpower. First.
Your toddler has to stop what they're doing and then control their urge to keep going which can be really tough for them. Then they have to manage their emotions about stopping and then shift their attention to the next thing. This can be a lot for your little one especially when they're not too thrilled about what's coming up next. This is why it's really important that you get into the habit of letting your toddler know in advance when it's time to change activities as this helps them to mentally prepare for that change. And there are a few ways that you can do this. The first option is to use a natural break in an activity. A natural break is simply a pause or endpoint in whatever they're doing. For instance if they're watching TV the end of their.
Show is a natural break. Or if they're eating breakfast, finishing their meal marks a natural pause. Using natural breaks means your toddler will probably be more cooperative because they won't feel like you're cutting them off. They'll get that the activity is over and now it's time to switch to something else. For example if you say to your toddler, “After your show we're going to have some lunch” and then when the show ends you just say “The show is finished so it's lunchtime.” This makes perfect sense to them. They can see that the end of the show is a clear sign that it's time to change activities and this will hopefully make them a little bit less resistant to this transition. Before I.
Introduce the second option it's important to note that the words you use to prepare your toddler for the change of activity matters. It's important that you adjust your language to match your child's level of understanding. To help you with this I've created a communication milestone chart. This free resource breaks down the language skills that you can expect from your child from 12 months of age all the way up to four years of age. It will help you tailor your words and explanations in a way that your child can understand. To get your free copy click the link in the description below this video. Now let's talk about the second option to make transitions a little bit easier for your.
Little one and that is using time. But this can be a little tricky since your toddler won't understand this concept yet so you need to show them what time looks like. Three great options for this include a kitchen timer, a sand timer or a timer on your phone or tablet. I find the timer on my phone really handy. It's always with me and the visual countdown helps my toddler to see how much time is left. Plus it has an alarm which is a great reminder for both of us. I can't tell you how many times I've gotten caught up in an activity and forgotten about that five minute warning I gave my toddler. So for me an alarm is definitely a must. When you are using your time with your toddler it's important that you put.
It in a spot where your toddler can see it and hear it. So for example when I'm using a timer to guide my toddler from one activity to another I might say to him, “In five minutes it's time to have a shower.” Then I'd set the timer and put it somewhere that my toddler can see it and more importantly where I can hear the alarm. And then when I hear the alarm I would help my toddler get into the shower. And the third option is to count down the number of times that they can repeat an activity. This clearly tells your toddler when an activity will finish, as well as, gives them time to get ready for the change. And this approach can really help in preventing tantrums. For example imagine you're at the.
Playground and your toddler is enjoying the slide. Instead of suddenly saying it's time to go which might upset them you could say, “You can go down the slide five more times before we go home.” Then you would count down each time they go down the slide. So you might say “Four more slides.” “Three more slides. “Two more slides. “Last one and then it's home time.” Then after that final slide, you could say “That was the last one now it's time to go home.” And then you would help them leave the park. This way your toddler knows exactly what to expect and hopefully leaves the park willingly. Now remember giving your toddler a heads up about a change in activity will make it easier for them to understand what's.
Coming next. However that doesn't always guarantee that they'll be happy about it. It is totally normal for your child to feel disappointed or upset about having to stop something they enjoy and react with big emotions. Now you might be tempted to quickly stop their outbursts by raising your voice or taking away something they like such as treats, screen time or even cancelling fun activities thinking that this will teach them to behave better next time. But research shows that this approach doesn't really help children learn how to behave better. In fact it could even make things worse. In this video you'll learn about what punishment actually teaches your little one and more.
Importantly a more effective way to manage your toddler's tantrums and meltdowns. So make sure you check it out.