Techniques To Distract A One Year Old

Lets face it there are 1,000 times in a day in which we need to distract our young children whether it be to avoid fidgeting when changing nappies, to stop them from going or touching something out of bounds. It's without a doubt one of my most used parenting tactics day to day. Using distractions not only takes their attention off of forbidden things and keeps them still enough to put their nappy on properly without it riding up their butt crack, infact it benefits both parent and child so all remains in control. If say your kid is making a run for the back door and they are not a door exiting pro then you need to think fast and stop them in their tracks before they fall. I'm going to share a few of the distractions that work on Penelope and maybe you could try out a few too...

1. Yes state the obvious, my number one go to distraction would be presenting them with a toy. One that will dazzle the mind of Penny and make her forget all about the dog bowl shes about to tip everywhere.

2. "Hey Penny, shall we sing a song?" always a big hit with my music and dance obsessed child. She'll stop to listen and perhaps start to bop along to any nursery rhyme. I wont use this in public of course as I would damage hearing I'm sure of it.

3. Making a fool of myself, this isnt exactly a difficult one for me as i tend to do this all day most days anyway, but if she's having a melt down over me taking the piece of mud that the dog kindly brought in the house away. I will quickly throw the mud in the bin; pretend it never existed and dance around while making silly noises which is totally thrilling to my one year old in distress, screams soon turn into a 'WTF, is she doing?' pitty laugh.

4. Food, a holy grail when out and about I say. Since Penelope has learnt to walk she can get really antsy about being in the buggy but its not practical or even safe to get her out when walking along main roads just yet. She'll thrash and whinge to every tree and car on the way home. I started giving her snacks to eat easily and as mess free as possible; cheese strings, skips, grapes, that sort of thing. It makes for an pleasant quiet stroll.

5. Grabbing the most random thing around me, for example my tangle teaser. Normally i'll give her something unusual to keep her occupied for a few seconds while I make the bed or wash out the bath. If I don't she's straight off causing mayhem around the flat and I end up having to pick up the entire contents of the wash basket from the hallway.

6. Pots, pans and spatulas. Perfect for when your cooking in the kitchen and your child is hanging round your ankles wanting to be involved. Cooking is tough as our living room and kitchen are open planned, so the danger factor is huge. I have tried her own toys but shes not interested in them when I am cooking. I put down a few empty pots and pans with some cooking utensils and away she goes. Happily playing coping mummy.

7. Speaking about getting your child involved in what your doing, why not let them actually help you in order to keep them distracted. There is no one year old in the world I don't think that doesn't love to pull clothes off the clothes horse. It's like loosing a battle while you load it up they pull it off just as quick. Instead what I do now is ask Penny to pass me the clothes and mummy puts them on. She loves this game and now wants to help me whenever we do the washing.

8. I hope I am not the only one who does this, if so, sign me up to the worlds worst mum club. I'm going to be completely honest though...I'll have Penny set up in her high chair and I am about to give her her lunch but crap it's too hot so she'll have to wait, there's no hope of getting her out again as she's now expecting food. Penny not being very patient when it comes to food will freak the hell out. So sometimes I'll give her a white chocolate button to yes, 'button it'. Perhaps its just me but it works. Guilty chocolate bribing.

9. At times even a snazzy toy or a dancing loon doesn't cut it. You've just got to pick them up and give them a hug. Sometimes I find the best distraction is a little love. If Penny really gets upset about not being allowed something or not getting her own way, nothing I've tried has worked and the melt down has subsided, i'll kneel down or pick her up and just tell her it's okay giving her a cuddle and kiss. I'll then create something fun for her to do instead and all is forgotten.

I hope you enjoyed that read and perhaps its given you ideas and perhaps made you laugh at the crazy things us parents have to do. If you have any of your own techniques of distracting your children please leave me a comment sharing yours.
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  1. Fab tips! Pretty sure we're all guilty of a little choccy bribery.. It would work on me so why not my toddler ;) haha xx

    1. Thanks Emily!! Glad it's not just me. Same here with the chocolate bribery on myself. I'd jump hoops if someone fed me chocolate buttons haha. Thank you for commenting lovely xx hope all is well with your family of 4!

  2. Snap! Jasmine wants to walk everywhere and obviously it's not safe for her to do that yet. So if she's in the buggy, she's eating something. It's the only way I can walk anywhere without her whinging.

    Jenna at Tinyfootsteps xx

    1. Exactly they act asif we're super villans for keeping them strapped up in the buggy, in actual fact we are keeping you safe pet! lol. Same but a packet of skips is gone in 30 seconds so end up having to bring 100 things to eat in my bag haha x

  3. Haha!! I do almost all of these!! I am constantly like "Elliott are you dancing, then dance with him just to keep him distracted that little bit longer while i move my phone/tv remote/or anything in the radius!! haha! Lovely read and you made me laugh! Suz x Beauisblue.com

    1. Haha! Glad its not just me lovely, glad i made you laugh. Hope your both well. Need a catch up! Lots of love x


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