There are times when we need our children to do what we ask them to do straight away. For example, we ask them to take a bath because they have to go to school. But, instead going to the bathroom, they refuse and choose to play their favorite toy. When we face this kind of situation, being angry won’t solve the problem. How it is so? If we’re angry, there’re two actions possibilities children will do. First, they will be defensive which are shown by keep playing or stop playing but still not doing what we ask for or avoiding us. Second, they will show tantrum and refuse us hard. When any of the possibilities happen, it will be more difficult for us to make them doing the activity they have to do.
So, when we are in such situation, we have to find a way to deal with the situation which won’t make the situation getting worse. One way to deal with it is through play or game. Why play or game? It’s a fun activity to do. Children tends to respond quickly to it because the play or game makes them curious. When their sense of curiosity is stimulated, they will choose to act on the sense. This intrinsic willingness won’t make them refuse the activity we offer. Not as in the case, if we’re being angry.
If it so, what play or game which will attract children’s attention and curiosity. Here are two types of play and game we can offer:
- Pretend play. Children love doing pretend play. When they pretend to be a character, they usually would love doing anything related with the character.
- For example, As in the case above, ask what our children do with their toy. If they do pretend play with the toy, go along with the play. While the play is on, give idea by using the toy he play. For example we say that the robot they play need to clean it’s body at the bathroom and our children must help the robot in the bathroom. This will make children finally go to the bathroom.
- If children are not doing pretend play at the moment, we have to be creative to think of the pretend play our children would love and play along too. We can create duck rescue play (use the rubber duck in the bathroom), pretend to be their favorite character which has to take a bath, etc. All those pretend plays, in the end will make children go to the bathroom.
- Daily activities challenge. Children like when they are able to do many things. If we challenge them to do something and they’re able to do it, they will feel proud of themselves for being able to do something important. For example, challenge them to take a bath by themselves, race with us in putting the dirty clothes onto the laundry basket, sort the toys to the right boxes, etc.
But those won’t do the magic by themselves. Our involvement is the important key to make both work. Here are the steps to make both work:
- Be attentive of what our children do at the moment we need them to do something. Do not ask them straight away to do what they have to do, but pay attention of what they do. Therefore, we can think of what is the right pretend play we can do based on what they are doing at that moment which we can stir to make them doing what they have to do.
- Deliberate the pretend play or the challenge excitedly and in a fun way. Our excitement will make them excited too and want to do the play or the challenge.
- Keep playing along when they finally do what they have to do till the end of the activity. This will make them do the activity excitedly and won’t think to do anything else but finishing the must do activity.
- Do the same with the challenge. Support them when they do the challenge. This will make them eager to do and finish the challenge well.
- Last, praise them for what they have done. This is important as this will make them feel proud of they’ve done. They will also make them know that we appreciate the activity they’ve done and make them want to do it again next time.
Those are the steps we can do to make the play and the game exciting. So, children would love doing what they have to do. And here are the note and tips in making and doing the play or game:
- The kind of play and game can be applied well for children under 5 years old.
- Be creative in making kinds of pretend play! Use anything our children like. Children usually will respond if we use thing they like and won’t reject the idea we’ve given.
- Think about the challenge carefully! Create the challenge we think our children have been able to do or make the challenge of the activity they haven’t been able to do but we know that they have been eager to try. Make sure that our children will be able to finish the challenge (It’s all right if they do not do it excellently. What really matter is that they finish it. This will give them the sense of accomplishment. This is very important. And always remember to praise them of all their effort)
That is all, how play and daily activities challenge can make children do what we ask them to do without tantrums arising from us and our children.