The modern-day parent is an extremely busy individual. With already so little time to attend to job responsibilities, household chores, and other personal commitments, it’s also unsurprisingly hard to manage babies and children with limitless energy.
Yes, we all know it’s good for us to take a moment every now and then to play with them or tend to their requests when they’re bored. But sometimes, there’s just so much to do that we unfortunately can’t break away from the task at hand.
When this happens, we struggle to think of things to do or ways to keep them preoccupied and usually resort to letting them do whatever they want—which most of the time involves a huge mess, an injury, or time wasted in front of a television screen.
But it doesn’t always have to be this way. The following are five simple methods that you can use and recycle over and over again to keep your kids engaged whenever you find yourself too busy to do parenting stuff.
Make everything a game
The most straightforward thing you can do is to prepare some games in advance to place into your kid’s activity time. To make this effective, you can and should vary your selection of games to keep things interesting and use whatever you have at your disposal.
One idea involves devising a grand treasure hunt around the house that makes them search for items on a list. You can make this hunt as simple or as complicated as you want depending on how much time you have to prepare, and you can create different variations so that each round feels fresh for you and your kids.
Ultimately, you can use the same technique with all other games that you plan for your kids. All you need is your creativity to keep things fresh.
Use chores to your advantage
Nobody enjoys doing chores—we all know this. But if you’re creative enough, you can use chores as a tactic to keep your kids occupied while helping you reduce your own workload, therefore killing two birds with one stone.
One effective way to get your kids to do chores is by including a reward at the very end. For example, rewarding your kids with their favorite meal when they finish a task or letting them accumulate points that will go to a purchase of a toy that they want are all ways to incentivize the completion of chores at home.
Also, be sure to keep the chores simple and within their capability, such as folding clothes or helping you clean the dishes in the kitchen when you cook, and don’t pair these chores with rewards too often in case they start expecting to be rewarded every time you ask them to do something.
Be smart with screentime
Many of us try to avoid putting our kids in front of the TV or an iPad because we believe that it makes them passive and inactive. But the truth is that there’s plenty of smart ways to utilize the screen while making the most of it.
Instead of just letting them watch a program, you can make it interactive by getting them to give you a summary of a show or a mini report of the things they’ve learned. Also, it’s wise to expose them to programs that you’ve curated yourself, such as award-winning child-friendly movies such as Mary Poppins and My Neighbor Totoro or educational kid’s programs that teach spelling, math, and science.
Also, if you have one of those popular fitness video games lying around, you can make use of them to give your kids a fun workout session!
Make use of things at home
You can also use everyday household items and objects around the house to create fun little learning activities that will keep your kids hooked for a long time. You can use little things such as magnets to help them learn about magnetic fields, and then giving them other small metal objects such as spoons or coins to let them see how they interact with each other.
If you have an outdoor area at home, teach them a thing or two about gardening by giving them responsibilities. These can be things like making sure the plants are doing great, watering dry plants, planting small bean sprouts and observing their growth, or even harvesting any ripe produce that you’ve been growing.
Start by looking around your home to find any objects that can teach your kids a thing or two about the world, you’ll be surprised at what you’ll find!
You can never go wrong with books!
And last but not least, you can always opt for books to fill your kid’s activity time when you’re too busy. You can use these books a variety of ways such as giving a pop quiz to your kid asking about new words learned or asking them to retell you the story from memory.
This way, your kids will have an objective to complete—something to look forward to at the end of a reading session which can confer them a sense of achievement.
If you want to add some titles to your kid’s collection, you should always pick out those that promise a large number of interactive features so your kid doesn’t get bored easily. Books that contain pictures, moving parts, mini games, or sound clips are usually the best way to go when choosing new titles as they have the replay factor that keeps things feeling fresh.
You can never go wrong with books!
Our line-up of sing-along sound books such as the Rasa Sayang Sing-And-Record Children Fun Book will give young readers an outlet to express their inner vocalist while learning about traditional Malay children’s songs and culture through catchy rhyme repetition and with beautiful child-friendly artwork.
Then there’s our Press-and-Learn English Malay Chinese Words Sound Book specially made to help babies and toddlers grasp basic everyday vocabulary. The included sound module ensures fun learning sessions where they’ll get acquainted with various animals, vehicles, fruits, vegetables, and much more through by hearing sound effects and repeating names in English, Bahasa, and Mandarin.
Finally, our newly released story sound book Bawang Putih & Bawang Merah presents a modern classic about a girl named Bawang Putih and the struggles she faces on her way to finding happiness. Filled with magical encounters and a charming plot, the book also comes feature packed with pressable sound clips, music, and bi-lingual narration in Bahasa and English to make the story experience a truly immersive one.
All the titles above were designed with the busy parent in mind, and will no doubt be worthy additions to your collection of entertaining and stimulating tools to keep your kids occupied.
To know more about our line of books in detail, head on over to our store here!