Tips on Parenting Your Toddler: Toddler Getting Dressed
A toddler getting dressed can be one of the most challenging situations you come across when parenting your toddler. Unlike older children who will communicate their needs and desires verbally, toddlers are not developmentally equipped to express their wants in a refined or sophisticated manner. Primitive and basic instincts are what they resort to and you as a despairing parent are left tearing your hair apart and trying to decipher the meaning behind your toddler’s peculiar behavior. Even when you do understand the reason for their obnoxious behavior, reasoning with them and persuading them to behave in more acceptable ways can be a tough struggle. Most often, tantrums occur when your toddler is getting dressed or fed in the morning.
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This is the time of day when you are trying to finish your chores in a hurry and having to witness a toddler tantrum leaves you emotionally distraught and spent. So what is the best way to ensure your toddler getting dressed and ready for his day? Well, the first step you can take is to try and understand the reason behind such unruly behavior.
Is your toddler particularly resistant to getting dressed at certain mornings rather than others? If so, you should try and analyze his schedule on that specific day to gauge what might have triggered the tantrum. If it is something that you can change about the morning routine, it makes sense to do so rather than continuing with this excruciating pattern. Very often, toddlers react in extreme ways when they are tired or hungry or if they feel that they are not getting enough attention because you are very busy with other things.
Throwing a tantrum is the simplest way of getting your attention which is then extended into other activities like the dressing time. So when parenting your toddler, the first thing you need to do to pave the way for a smooth dressing time is to make sure that your toddler is well-fed and that you have devoted at least fifteen minutes to playing with him prior to your efforts making sure that your toddler is getting dressed. This will most probably make your child a lot more receptive to the entire routine of dressing.
If your child belongs to the vast majority of toddlers who have no particular reason for throwing a tantrum during dressing time, you need to address the whole issue differently. Tantrums usually elicit sharp responses from parents and believe it or not, your toddler wallows in these kinds of reactions. Hence, when parenting your toddler try and put up a façade of indifference even if you are actually seething from within. This is a good way of discouraging your child to continue with the tantrum. Another way to lessen the tantrum throwing tendency is to heap praises on your toddler when he does compose himself in a relaxed and quiet manner.
Even though these are some sure-shot ways to eliminate the tantrum-throwing sessions while your toddler is getting dressed, your priority should be to make the whole process of dressing fun so that your toddler looks forward to it rather than detest it. You could begin by buying clothes that have popular cartoon brands imprinted on them. Your child is usually so engrossed with examining the cartoon characters that he forgets to fuss when getting clothed.
Normally toddlers in the two to five year range love listening to stories. When parenting your toddler, an innovative method of catching their attention is to narrate stories of the imprinted cartoon characters on their clothes. Even general story-telling will bring the same results and dressing time can then be converted into a combination dressing and story-telling time. Of course, you need some patience for this, but the rewards will be well worth it.
Many toddlers feel as if they have no control over their surroundings and are being dictated to every single minute of the day. This aspect of the matter is usually not known to adults who are parenting toddlers, since they take them to be too small to experience such feelings. However, research proves that even toddlers feel the need to make some decisions and a great way to incorporate this into the dressing time is by letting your toddler choose what to wear.
When letting your toddler make a choice, see to it that it does not get too complex for him. For example, allowing him to choose from the entire range of his wardrobe might intimidate him and defeat your purpose. What you need to do when parenting toddlers is to present two or three options so that your toddler can select one that he is most comfortable with. This will eliminate a lot of stress associated with the process of dressing.
If morning time is especially hectic for you and you have no time to indulge in such a time-consuming procedure, you can pre-pone the actual dress choosing ritual into the list of activities before bed time. This will also prepare your child for the morning routine. Another great way to limit dressing time when parenting toddlers is to transform it into a game about who can dress faster. This is very effective when you have two children or more who can all join in the spirit of the game and compete in a playful manner. This will enhance the appeal connected with dressing time.
Some toddlers will persist in asking for clothes that do not suit the season. In such cases, you need to be firm and make them understand the whole concept of winter and summer clothing, rather than letting them wear inappropriate clothing that can affect their health.
However, when parenting your toddler, do not be over-critical or make fun about their dressing sense. Even if it is a bit different from other kids, you as a parent should appreciate the fact that every child is unique and has different tastes and sensibilities. Who knows, you may be raising a creative fashion designer who will come up with beautiful designs in future.
Once your toddler is dressed, make it a point to give some positive feedback on a regular basis. Toddlers thrive on compliments and welcome as much as is given to them. This also helps in building a sense of individuality and confidence about the choices they make.
Enduring your toddler getting dressed doesn't have to be the worst part of your day. By following these simple tips when parenting your toddler, you can potentially eliminate all the stress and headache formerly associated with your mornings. What more can you ask for?
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