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Daycare Center and Family Home Forum>My SA's are driving me crazy!
TGT09 12:13 PM 07-26-2010
I have only 2 toddlers this summer (with one of them only being a drop-in). I can entertain them until I'm blue in the face but I have some of the laziest "couch potato" SA's ever! ALL, they want to do is watch movie's and play Wii, computer games, etc. I don't want them to be miserable so I allow it to a "point". I try to interact with them as much as possible....get them outside (which is like pulling teeth).

With it getting close to school start, my mom's that are teachers....their kids are coming to dc more frequently. AHHHH, I'm gonna pull my hair out!

I hear, "do we have to?" at least 2 dozen times a day! I can't quite get them to do anything....if I DO get them outside then they just sit there.

I do have crafts but none of them ever want to do them and I don't think it's right to "force" them.

I need some serious help! Suggestions please!

I know I need to get them to do something but I have mostly boy SA's and they like weird stuff that I don't know how to stimulate. A couple of them are children of scientists so they are my ones that hate to go outside and want to spend all day on the computer.

Ideas?

On a weekly basis my ages are:
2-2 year olds
2-6 year olds
1-7 year old
2-8 year olds
1-9 year old
1-10 year old
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Jenjo 12:55 PM 07-26-2010
I have some kids like that too. I get frustrated when they either sit around doing nothing or chasing each other inside and knocking the little kids down. We have an old xbox that they are only allowed to play on Friday's they have to earn the right to play it. I do let them watch t.v. more than I should but we try to keep that to a minimum (like just during rest time). They like the legos. I have to sit down and play with them sometimes to motivate them to figure out what they can build with the legos. The other thing they seem to like a lot is building huts. so I take old blankets and sheets outside, and we have some boards we took out of a construction site dumpster. You could just get some old boxes from a furniture store too. They love to build their forts and at the end of the day they have to clean them up and make a nice neat pile. They complain, but half the fun is the next day they start all over making another hut. You might have to help them in the beginning. Just remember to ask open ended questions to help them think. Sometimes it is so hot here that they don't do much when we go outside so I usually turn on a sprinkler so that they can play in it. That seems to help.
I hope some of these ideas help! and Good Luck!
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momofsix 12:58 PM 07-26-2010
Do you think they would like something like goop (cornstarch mixed w/ water) that they could mix up themselves?
Or maybe legos-they can get quite involved if you can keep the little ones away? Board games?
I think this is becoming a HUGE problem with kids nowadays. I remember leaving to go outside after breakfast and chores, coming in for lunch, leaving again until dinner, and then leaving again until the streetlights came on! We were outside all day long in the summer-riding bikes, skateboards, swinging, playing football,soccer,baseball...and we had FUN! If I would have tried to sit in the house I'm sure my mom would have made my life miserable. Her line was "if you can't find something to do, then I'll find something for you (which meant work of course) My own kids have no idea how I survived childhood without cable tv, computers and video games They are so used to having something or someone entertaining them that they can't seem to do it themselves anymore. Sad, but I'm not here to entertain anyone!
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TGT09 02:22 PM 07-26-2010
Originally Posted by momofsix:
Do you think they would like something like goop (cornstarch mixed w/ water) that they could mix up themselves?
Or maybe legos-they can get quite involved if you can keep the little ones away? Board games?
I think this is becoming a HUGE problem with kids nowadays. I remember leaving to go outside after breakfast and chores, coming in for lunch, leaving again until dinner, and then leaving again until the streetlights came on! We were outside all day long in the summer-riding bikes, skateboards, swinging, playing football,soccer,baseball...and we had FUN! If I would have tried to sit in the house I'm sure my mom would have made my life miserable. Her line was "if you can't find something to do, then I'll find something for you (which meant work of course) My own kids have no idea how I survived childhood without cable tv, computers and video games They are so used to having something or someone entertaining them that they can't seem to do it themselves anymore. Sad, but I'm not here to entertain anyone!
I completely agree! I was the same way as a child....I grew up on a farm so there wasn't "inside" time alot no matter how hot/cold it was outside. They have a hard time using their imagination because electronics do that for them now.

Unfortunately, riding bikes here is not an option since there is no place for it. I live on a super busy street and have a short driveway. :-(

I ended up e-mailing mom to ask what they do at home...she did mention legos so buying them are definitely in my immediate future.

She also mentioned that they have to do math worksheets at home to earn computer time and said she would send some with them next time they come.

I just feel like I'm going to go crazy some days. Up until I have these 4 drop-in teacher's kids....I can take my other SA's out and about to the park, pool, library etc. I can take 3 in my car so even if I just had these 4, I can't go anywhere.
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melskids 02:27 PM 07-26-2010
cardboard boxes. seriously.

i just ordered a bunch of new stuff for the fall (well, for now too...lol)
they asked if they could have the boxes. they sat there building mini towns and forts, i gave them a bunch of craft stuff to decorate them with, and it took all day. they came back today and played with them again. if i had known that, i would have "ordered" boxes weeks ago.....lol

i MAKE them go outside and have them find something to do. the only time they get TV or playstation is during nap (they bug all day for it) but that way it doesnt lose its appeal. they seem to still like goop, gak, bubbles, etc. the little tiny legos are still a hit, but mainly cause my 14 yr old still likes them, and he entertains them with lego battles all day, and the SA boys think he's just soooo cool...lol the girls like to color and do "crafts" from oriental trading. we tie dyed tshirts, went on a treasure hunt, and did some science experiments. it is sad though, cause they only time they seem content is when they have something electronic in front of them.
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Chickenhauler 02:39 PM 07-26-2010
Originally Posted by melskids:
cardboard boxes. seriously.

i just ordered a bunch of new stuff for the fall (well, for now too...lol)
they asked if they could have the boxes. they sat there building mini towns and forts, i gave them a bunch of craft stuff to decorate them with, and it took all day. they came back today and played with them again. if i had known that, i would have "ordered" boxes weeks ago.....lol
Add to that tinker toys, lincoln logs, lego's, etc things of that nature where the possibilities of what they can build is only limited by their mind.

It's rare that a day doesn't go by when the Lincoln Logs don't come out.
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TGT09 02:58 PM 07-26-2010
Alright, I'm making a list to check Craigslist for. They just discovered that I had army men and planes....that I've pointed out several times. It just took me telling them no, they couldn't do it and now they're off. Lesson learned later than it should have been but still not too late.
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Lucy 11:09 AM 07-28-2010
I know it's kind of late for this idea as far as summer goes, but maybe you could use it as an after-school idea.

Before school was out for the year, I printed up June, July & August calendars. We then brainstormed ideas of things we could do, then put them on the calendar. Sometimes it was as simple as "eat corn dogs" (which are a treat, since I don't normally allow them due to their crappy nutrition!). Some of the things we wrote include:

Make a fort
Scavenger hunt
Library
Park
Science Book Project Page X (we have a book of kid science experiments and they each picked 2 pages to put on the calendar)
Make a paper house (HUGE dollhouse type house made of construction paper)

There is something written on each day. Like I said, sometimes it's just what we eat for lunch that day. But it gives them something to look forward to. Each day they look at the calendar for the next day and know what to expect. They have enough down time, but at least there's something planned for at least part of the day.
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melskids 11:51 AM 07-28-2010
joyce - i did the same thing!!! LOL

i looked up special days like national watermelon day (we ate watermelon) , go fly a kite day (we made homemade kites), disney land anniversary (we did crafts related to disney characters), and so on. the ones that didnt have something, i just made something up and like you said, sometimes it was just a special lunch or snack. the Sa really look foward to it.
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boysx5 12:44 PM 07-28-2010
I can never seem to please the one school age girl I have nothing is ever good enough for her and she is driving me nuts she does watch t.v. at nap time and I'm so tired of looking at her can't wait for school to start there better be no days off in Sept that the mom wants her sibling comes full time so I feel like I should take her when they need it
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