I have always been envious of those moms who can curl up with a book and sit there sipping their coffee while the little one makes merry in the play pen with some quiet book.
I on the other hand, had a boy who had this incessant need to always be on the move, from dawn to dusk. His energy levels were so high that my days duplicated the training for Olympics! While his father and I would love to laze, he would be ready to bounce off the bed and embrace the day with full gusto. He would always be busy jumping around on sofas, crawling under tables, role-paying and if all that didn’t happen, I would find him somewhere in the bathroom creating a flood.
The biggest challenge for me was to manage this energy in my child without extinguishing out the fiestiness in him.
Here are the 6 tips that I found effective in handling my high energy kid.
- Coping With A High Energy Kid Tip #1: Allow Lots Of ‘Up’ Time
One of the greatest things to do is let high energy kids get out the energy. Between sitting still in school, on the bus ride, through structured activity times, the energy gets bottled up. Venting it out by moving, jumping or dancing is something I encouraged. This helped bring out the physical energy with guided supervision. In fact, experts suggest that pre-schoolers should never be sedentary for more than 60 minutes at a time, except when they’re sleeping.
- Coping With A High Energy Kid Tip #2: Allow time for ‘down’ time
I noticed that my son gets this sudden surge in energy right before his bed time. So it’s best to aim at some down time activity like reading, bathing or just plain story telling right before bed time. It helps in the transition from busy to bed time and makes for a more restful sleep. The result: more manageable energy levels the next day.
- Coping With A High Energy Kid Tip #3:Engage The busy brain
Guide and encourage the child towards self-entertainment or independent play. Keeping himself busy at some point of the day in some activity will teach your child to keep himself calm when you want him to.
- Coping With A High Energy Kid Tip #4:Schedule for some ‘Outside Play Time’
There is something therapeutic about outside play time both for the kids; and me. Riding bikes, climbing on the trees, running around chasing a ball, these really help to burn out energy. Investing in some outdoor moving toys such as a trampoline, a balancing bar is also a super idea for kids who have high energy.
- Coping With A High Energy Kid Tip #5: Restrict Screen Time
Watching the screen consumes the least amount of energy. Also research says that for every hour of television watched per day, children were 10% more likely to have attention problems. Let’s say 2 hours of television per day would equate to being 20% more at risk of attention problems. Thus it is best to keep high energy kids TV time to the minimum.
- Coping With A High Energy Kid Tip #6: Focus On Positive Behaviour
It is very important to appreciate a high energy child for his positive behaviour. With a continuous reminder to him to ‘sit still’ he’s probably on a loss for praise. So appreciate efforts to work quietly, make sure you tell him that you notice he’s trying to not jump, or that he’s been really helpful in the grocery shop by not fidgeting. It helps a lot if you teach the child to manage behaviour internally rather than trying to rein the child in.
Also read here ‘How To Help Over Stimulated Kids’