Thursday, September 6, 2012

Take Advantage of those Diaper Changes!

Yes, the title sounds a bit funny, but I have discovered that having three kids is (gasp) a challenge in many ways.  As you know, I suffer from extreme "mom-guilt" and one of those issues that I feel guilty about is the amount of time I spend with our youngest son working on little skills like counting, the alphabet, and singing those fun childhood songs.

Well, I've come up with a little solution to help relieve some of that guilt.  For quite some time now, I have taken the few minutes I have changing his diaper several times a day and turned it into fun learning time.  This also works as a great distraction for the wiggly, impatient toddler who does not want to have his diaper changed!

During this time we work on counting and I provide a prompt for the next number when needed.  He does great up to the teens and then needs some help.  Generally, I find that he'll repeat what I say and we count up to 20.  To work on counting, you could also add in some fun little rhymes like "One, Two Buckle My Shoe," "Five Little Monkeys Jumping on then Bed," "Five Green and Speckled Frogs," or make up a tune of your own.  Usually those made-up tunes are a big hit with the little crowd!

We also work on singing the alphabet and other fun songs that require some interaction and motions.  One of his favorites is "The Wheels on the Bus" and it can go on forever (works great for that change that's going to take awhile!).  He loves to fill in the action word once I give him the cue (i.e. "The mommy's on the bus go...").  Pausing and giving them the opportunity to fill in the blank is a great way to build on those cognitive skills.  You can also substitute the bus for something else they like (train, tractor, etc.).  Some of our other favorite diaper change songs are "The Itsy-Bitsy Spider," "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star," and "Take Me out to the Ballgame."

I know this isn't rocket science by any means, but if you find yourself rushed or have difficulty finding some uninterrupted time, this is a great way to steal a few minutes at a time to interact and have some fun with your kiddos.  Of course, you can always do these activities in the car as well.  A few minutes here and there can go a long way!

"Five Green and Speckled Frogs."

Five green and speckled frogs, sat on a speckled log, eating some most delicious bugs (rub tummy).  Yum, yum!  One jumped into the pool, where it was nice and cool, now there are four green speckled frogs.  (Continue through one).

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