One thing I’ve learned with my children is that they behave better when they’re kept busy. When there’s been an excess of bickering, fighting and mischief, it’s usually due to my being preoccupied with something other than my children (Facebook, anyone?). While they wander unmonitored, trouble brews.
One way to keep the kids busy is to come up with activities for specific blocks of time. This takes planning and strategizing, but it will be seeds for a more peaceful home.
In our house we have School Time, Pick Up Toys Time, Lunch Time, Play Time, Writing Practice Time, Reading Time, Drawing/Coloring Time, Puzzle Time, Clean Up Kitchen Time, Chore Time, Movie Time, etc. Giving the kids a sense of structure and organization reigns in their behavior and attention.
Even if I enter my day unplanned, I can still turn it around by announcing, “Okay everyone, it’s Lego Time!” Get everyone focused on the same activity. Then plan out the next few hours, and do your best to stay a couple of steps ahead of your children. Approach each new activity with excitement, expecting each little person to participate. This will promote unity, and discourage complaining if they know they all have to do it together.
Another way to keep your kids busy is to have them work with you. Teach them to participate in the chores you do. If they complain about having to work, be even more adamant about them completing their chores until it’s so common they expect work to be a normal part of their day. Not only will they stay out of trouble, but they’ll get a head start on developing a good work ethic!
She watches over the ways of her household, And does not eat the bread of idleness. Proverbs 31:27