Tricks to Keep Little Early Bird Risers Occupied


By Rebecca Lemar

Our family is past the 4:00 am wake up calls, thank heavens, but 6:00 am is the new hour. Those bright-eyed, happy little early birds wake up energized, bounding into our bedroom with smiles and good morning kisses even if they go to sleep later than usual.  6:00am is the start of the day no matter what.

Epic Summer 2015 006I wish I was a morning person. I wish I would chase the sunrise and do a five mile run. But, I love 7am. 7am and a slow entry to the day work best for me. To give myself that extra hour, I have a children’s art table with paper and art supplies, Legos, puzzles and journals for doodling, in the hallway. I can hear them playing. I can hear them working, and I sleep in just a little bit longer very nearby, door open, and awake if they need me. Mama gets her extra rest while the children get some quiet play time.

Of course, the same old stuff on the table morning after morning doesn’t cut it for too long and that’s when I started introducing Five New Things. Five new things either on the shelf (new puzzles, new blocks, new journal, new tape, new markers) that are actually just things they haven’t seen in a while or 5 new art supplies that I would leave in the middle of the clean table (square of tin foil, circle stickers, a plastic container cap and a stencil, etc.) This changed everything.   It wasn’t “go entertain yourself until I’m ready to get up,” it was “Five new things are waiting” and they were off to check it out.IMG_0415

Or try this: When you are waiting for dinner or it’s late morning and boredom creeps in, try Five New Things. I let my son pick out Five Ingredients from the cupboard.   He places them on the chopping block next to a bowl, puts an apron on and makes his concoctions. The best is vinegar and baking soda, and the bubbly reaction of mixing them together. The trick is to pique their attention with new supplies, the kids will do the rest with their endless curiosity and creativity!


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