Once toddlers get moving they’re hard to stop! Very little gets in their way and big pieces of furniture make no exception. Their curiosity can sometimes lead them to gain extreme confidence in their climbing skills. Even though curiosity is a good thing, you should keep an eye on your little hikers all the time.
Mothercraft nurse, Chris Minogue, provides three effective tips to stop a clambering toddler in their tracks.
1. Step outside
A great way to distract children from climbing everything around the house is to entice them outside. Let them use up all their energy discovering the great outdoors.
“I would get [them] outside the house to climb on something else,” Chris says. “Let [them] climb in the park.”
Keep an eye on your child while they’re playing outside, watch them go up and down the slide and play on other park furniture under your watchful eye. This is a great strategy not only for your toddler to expend their energy, but for both of you get some fresh air and sun. Win-win!
2. Go for a walk
Most of the time, the easiest way to go for a walk with your toddler is to pop them in the pram and take them for stroll around the block.
Chris suggests letting your toddler walk out and about freely, whenever it’s safe to do so- rather than keeping them in the pram. Let their little feet explore the neighbourhood for themselves.
Tip: Encourage your toddler to be active outside, this way they will be less likely to climb the furniture once back inside.
3. Distract them
Sometimes, distraction works like a charm compared to a restrictive “no”.
“At home, fight the battles that are worth fighting, this will save you a lot of energy “ says Chris. “Climbing on the couch is not such a big deal- but climbing up a set of drawers ? really big deal.”
When they even vaguely look like they’re heading towards a set of drawers to conquer, Chris suggests, “ standing in front of them and distracting them; instead of saying ‘no’, ‘don’t’ and ‘stop’.”
A great distraction, in this case, could be getting out a plastic container they like playing with, or their favourite toy. Chris explains, “they will soon learn to forget climbing forbidden heights in the home.”
Whenever your child wants to climb the furniture in your house, try these simple yet effective ways to distract them.
Always remember to keep a close eye on your adventurous little hiker.