Friday, October 31, 2008

Keeping Sammy busy...

I had just started this post by uploading the pictures, when who should come along and press "publish post" but Sam the Man. So, at first this post had no words. Then I realized that it probably could have been "wordless" and you would have gotten the point. But I'm not a "wordless" kind of person...I have many words.

So, what I was GOING to say is that I have been trying to be more disciplined about giving Sammy a daily know, so that he'll always know what's coming next and hopefully we'll avoid some of the tantrums and fussing that come from never knowing WHEN we're going to watch a show or WHEN we're going to get to go outside...etc. So, my attempt at a morning plan for Sam and Claire (when they aren't at school) will hopefully be something like the following: breakfast, watching Curious George, Bible story with Mom, other stories and songs (they like to teach me the ones that they say at "circle time" at school)...

...and then a walk. I'm hoping to be very disciplined about making myself take the walk even in bad weather. Even if it's just 10 minutes long I think it will be good for Sam. And sometimes you get a little bonus when you're taking a walk, like this morning, when we saw a construction worker digging a hole and Sammy wanted to watch him. Then he invited each of the kids to come sit in his backhoe! Thanks nice Construction Worker Man! The hope here is that when we come home from all of this that they'll play nicely together for a little while, but if they don't, then I'll have other morning activities ready to go.

Like, once a week we'll bake something, (this bread recipe came from a little Waldorf book that has simple recipes to make with kids). There is lots of kneading involved so it's a great one for an active boy.

Or, he could play with beans and rice. I heard this idea on a website for kids with "sensory issues" and it's also in line with the Waldorf idea that kids really love digging and dumping, scooping and pouring out at this age. I gave him his kitchen stuff to play with this time, but one time he liked burying his cars in it and then making them pop out, (just keep a vacume handy).

I'm also trying to experiment with bringing toys to different areas of the house than we usually have them. Like, for instance, we brought the trains up off the never-used train table and built this track upstairs. They liked walking around the tall dining room table with the trains for a while.
And when we're desperate, we'll take a bath. If there is one thing that Sammy loves, it's water. Splashing in puddles, washing dishes (he does that one daily at our kitchen sink with bubbles and a bunch of non-breakable tupperware-type stuff) and baths. He always resists the bath at first, but it doesn't take long before he's calling to me "MOM...can you find my goggles! I'm going underwater now!" or doing other Critter-like adventures.

That only brings us up to lunch, of course, and pretty much every one of those options is messy, so I'll be exhausted and nap will have to be next.

I don't have anything planned to get us through the HARD time of the day (3-5) but I'm thinking of there being a craft or other art thing after nap, a snack, and maybe even another short walk before dinner.

I don't plan on all these things happening every day, but I thought if I brought out one a day (like the beans/rice are only on Mondays or the art stuff is on Tuesdays or baking is Friday) during the after-walk time, then maybe Sammy will settle into a bit of a rhythm.

Anyway, that's my hope. We'll see.


Ellen said...

You, dear Susan, sound like an absolutely amazing mother. I can only imagine how exhausting and frustrating it can be sometimes, but from the little glimpse I get of your life on your blog, you're doing a great job!

ramona said...

i love it!

how was your bread? i thought about baking bread once a week with lydia...we tried 3 times, it never really came out, so i lost steam. i'm on the search for an easy bread recipe that works!