I have a new toddler now (she’s only 28 months) and she’s too young for some of the things that Eli was doing when I first started teaching Jacob. I’ve had to come up with some new strategies to accommodate all of us during school time.
We do the majority of school lessons that I have to teach or read in the mornings, which means Rachael is awake for those times. But, as you are probably aware, reading aloud and Bible study-type work needs to be done in relative quiet.
So, Rachael now has blanket-time (or “blankie-time” as she calls it) for about an hour in the morning. At first, I didn’t think I’d be able to train her since I hadn’t started when she was really little, but it’s gone relatively well.
We’ve been doing blanket time consistently for several months now (I think we started in August).
I started with some toys and books and only requiring her to sit for about 10 minutes – and lots of praise for her accomplishing it! We are now up to almost an hour!!
If you’re interested in trying this out with your toddler, here are some tips that have worked for us:
~ Use the same blanket each day – I actually prefer this to be the the blanket’s only use. I chose an oversized flannel receiving blanket I still had around.
~ When starting out, place the blanket in the same place, in the same room. This can be altered once the child is trained enough to understand the purpose of that blanket.
~ Provide toys and books for entertainment.
~ Provide a small snack of either pretzels, raisins or crackers (Rachael is on carpet, so I don’t want to have to clean up anything soggy in case of spills).
~ If your child is potty trained, take him/her to the potty immediately before starting blanket-time.
~ Decide ahead of time what form of discipline you’ll use in shepherding your child in this new form of obedience and expect to use it. Be clear in your instruction and consistent in your expectations and discipline.
~ Be patient with your child in learning to sit still and quiet and expect a few interruptions to your school time.
Rachael has now learned the routine and each day when I ask one of the boys to get out the Bible work, she runs for her blanket and announces “blankie-time!”
* We’ve graduated to almost on the blanket since she understands her boundaries so well!! She’s cuddling her baby on an old body pillow they were playing with in their ‘fort’!
This post is linked to Works For Me Wednesday.