Here’s a simple game to play after your child’s been playing/using something and leaves it abandoned on the floor, or doesn’t put it back. Put yourself in the role of the object and run after them saying something like this, ”hey, I’ve been abandoned and I’m all alone, please help me!”
You’ll probably find your child enjoys running away and giggles, and that those giggles can help them feel more like co-operating and putting the object back. You can keep role-playing as the object, chasing them and playfully pleading with them to be put back in the right place.
They might like to chase for a while before that happens, but all that play and connection is a great way to build co-operation not just in the moment, but as investment in their future co-operation. As we say with Hand in Hand Parenting ”connection builds co-operation.”
After some time playing you might find it more useful to move in and set a limit in a more ‘serious’ way, but still with lots of warmth and connection. You can read more about how we set limits with Hand in Hand Parenting in this free e-book.
If you are looking for more fun ways to get your children to tidy up check out my list here!