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playing with your dc, how do you know what to do?

(29 Posts)
Rochel4 Mon 26-Oct-09 22:10:10

I have 4 dc, age 7 and under. Its difficult to give them all attention when they need it, and they always ask me to play with them, yet i never find the time to sit down and do it. How do you spend that quality time with your dc and what do you do/play? Also, how do you find the time??

Cadelaide Mon 26-Oct-09 22:14:09

Just ask them what they would like to do/play, get down on the floor and do it with them.

Having said that my middle DC asks me to play several times a day and I never, ever seem to find enough time for her. Also, she always wants to play with her Sylvanian Families and my heart just sinks. It just bores me and i yawn and yawn.

I feel so guilty typing that and have thought hard about whether to press "post message". sad

Cadelaide Mon 26-Oct-09 22:16:55

I think probably you have to schedule it in, perhaps? I'm always saying " a minute, i just have to hang the washing out/stack the dishwasher/blahblahblah...". Then they go off and do something while they're waiting and I think "oh, I'll just blahblahblah" and then they've forgotten and it's bedtime.

Thing is though, they haven't forgotten have they?

Cadelaide Mon 26-Oct-09 22:17:51

So....(talking to myself here grin), tomorrow I will play with my daughter at 11 am.

Watch here for updates...

Rochel4 Mon 26-Oct-09 22:33:28

actally wanted to post the same thing, it bores me to death! esp my dd who wants to play mommys and babies. its just not a fun game anymore! ;)
thing is we went to speak to someone about issues we are having with our 7yo ds, and she told us to play with the kids in a stimulating way. what exactly does that entail?
another thing i find tedious (aren't i wicked!) blush is playing with my 8mo baby. just don't know what to do with her after about 3 minutes.

ABitHaloweenBatty Mon 26-Oct-09 22:35:11

My ds2 always wants to play Monopoly - boring and he is a bad loser hmm

Cadelaide Mon 26-Oct-09 22:46:12

Oh thankyou thankyou both for admitting you find it boring.

I do feel so bad about that.

As for playing with them " a stimulating way..", that's a lot to ask without offering any guidance, I think. Actually, if you let them lead you I don't really see how it can be non-stimulating, iyswim, unless perhaps you were just sat watching him/her play on a games console or something.

moaningminniewhingesagain Mon 26-Oct-09 22:51:12

My DCs are 2.6 and 10m. Us all playing together usually involves playing in big cardboard boxes, playing tea parties, all having a sing and dance to some bloody awful CD from ELC, Playing with bricks/mega bloks type things.

Or me and DD sometimes make cakes/biscuits while DS sits in his highchair eating a wooden spoon

moaningminniewhingesagain Mon 26-Oct-09 22:52:33

And if they seem happy playing together I can sneakily do some mumsnetting hang some laundry out or do a bit of washing up

Iatemyskinnyperson Mon 26-Oct-09 22:56:56

Oh Thank God. I hate playing, am cross-eyed with boredom.

I usually take them places rather than spend time at home playing - to the park, to the playground or on playdates. But I know its not really enough, especially since I'm a SAHM and DS2 doesn't go to playgroup... blush

Flibbertyjibbet Mon 26-Oct-09 23:14:08

I just join in with whatever the ds's are doing. Lego, painting, drawing, building their own hotwheels tracks from tubes, or making houses for their power rangers.
Outside I get them having scooter races, finding leaves etc.
Then we come home and play at tidying up.
I don't think we ever plan things to do playing with them, I guess in our house its

baby-led playing grin

they are 3 and almost 5 btw.

Cadelaide Tue 27-Oct-09 11:47:14


I forgot.

I have to confess that at 11 o'clock I was hiding in my bedroom reading blush

DCs all very happy though, DD is making cards out of bits and pieces. It would have been rude to interrupt and ask her to play, don't you think?

itshappenedagain Tue 27-Oct-09 12:15:12

i usually schedual a time to do exactly what he wants for at least an hour a day, but other than this i try and work the day around 30 minute intervals. my Ds is a big fan of helping, so will follow me around and help me( passes pegs pairs socks etc) and i have to fight him for the hoover! other than that park, out on bike scooter anything like that. we will be starting to amake our christmas cards next week so projects sometimes fill the time.

itshappenedagain Tue 27-Oct-09 12:17:44

oh also use tidying up as a game and if all else fails go on you tube and find o workout video and see who can do the best moves( do this when i have a few children here! they love it!

pranma Tue 27-Oct-09 12:25:37

I sit on floor with dgs1 and push wooden trains around,I build tunnels or garages with megabloks,I race Bob the Builder vehicles,I cover table with newspaer and comment on Playdoh models or paintings.We stand by sink of warm water[him on chair]and blow bubbles,wash plastic cups and kitchen stuff-pouring water through funnels,sieves etc.We bake buns and biscuits.He is just 3.With dgs2-8 months-we bang different objects on wooden drum,tear/crumple paper,try to post thins in posting box,put small objects in shoe box and try to find them,play with lots of noisy plastic stuff.We also do a lot of looking at books appropriate to age.I have dgs2 1 day a week and dgs1 2 half days every other week.I am lucky-when I am with them I am able to devote all my time to them.If one of them is happily playing themselves I usually have a sneaky read myself.

francaghostohollywood Tue 27-Oct-09 12:32:02

Mine are now 7 and 5 and play together a lot, and need me less to play with them.
Nowadays we play board or card games together, I read them a book, or I play "the teacher" when they play "school".

When they were younger I used to get down on the floor with them and played with duplo, did jigsaws, and often pretended to be the costumer and they'd be the waiters/cooks etc. Lots of pretend playing.

When ds was a small toddler, I had to sit with him and draw him lots of cars etc and spent hrs looking at toys catalogues or the Yellow Pages!

Ripeberry Tue 27-Oct-09 12:39:23

Chasing and monster games are always a favourite, also hide and seek. I'm more of a physical person. Sitting down to play board games bores me silly grin

Cadelaide Tue 27-Oct-09 12:51:47

Absolutely Ripeberry. I'm much better at the romping stuff.

Fennel Tue 27-Oct-09 14:32:39

I don't play much with mine, I see it as a perk of having 3 close in age that they have siblings for playing with. I don't feel any guilt about it.

I do lots with them but not playing.

WickedWitchinthesticks Tue 27-Oct-09 14:38:12

This thread has just made me feel better.
My DCs are now 11 and 13 and no longer want me to play with them. I've been feeling a bit sad that all that has passed so quickly and yet I do remember now how tedious some of it was.

PoisonToadstool Tue 27-Oct-09 14:38:23

I am happy to admit I don't much enjoy playing with my 2 year old. I love reading to him, going to soft play, swimming, the library, and at home I don't mind doing some colouring with him or play-dough for a (short) while - but on the floor, playing trains? I do it in very short bursts and find it tedious. So the most I can manage is a couple of minutes enthusiasm and then I have to do something else, so I'll tell him to carry on while mummy does XYZ. I don't feel in the least bad about it though, and thankfully he is usually happy to play alone intermittently.

I find it easier when DP is here actually, as we all join in and it feels less forced. But equally I like to leave them to it and hide behind a book grin

facebookaddict Tue 27-Oct-09 14:53:04

I am usually a 4 day working mum (currently on mat leave) so get 1 full day with DS which I dedicated entirely to playing to make up for the other days.

When I can't face it I schedule interesting trips out, playdates or go to our rainy day default - reading 20 books!

I agree that it can get tiresome but am lucky to have a contrast with work and use my salary to get a cleaner and order all shopping online in my lunch hours so that I can spend the whole day doing what DS wants but I realise this is totally impractical and unsustainable for full time SAH mums.

I have to say that this approach has totally backfired on me with the arrival of DD.... am currently trying to encourage some solo playtime with limited success!

Jujubean77 Tue 27-Oct-09 14:58:26

Oh it is so tiresome, the playing thing...

DD is pretty good at occupying herself so I can snatch some time on internet/ reading paper, but I feel super guilty at how awful I am at play. I prefer activities/ oudoor trips but in Winter this rarely possible so tv is on more.

Mostly I engage in some role play/ shops but never really get into it at all blush thank god DH is good at it on Weekends! She is also at preschool so gets lots of play there...

MrsFawlty Tue 27-Oct-09 15:05:59

Oh yay! I was feeling like a hideous mother because I find I'm crap at playing with them (and I've been on a SureStart course to find out how!) - I just find it really dull. And I've been hating myself for feeling like that but it doesn't come naturally. I think I'll be better at being a mother when they're a bit older and I can engage a bit more intellectually with them, IYSWIM.

Poohbearsmom Tue 27-Oct-09 15:29:54

It Really is tough findin the time Isnt it!! Im constantly behind myself & do find it hard too but what iv started to do is cook dinner for two days at a time then i hav one 'day off' from da big cookin & i spend time playin on da floor wit them instead. Today we did puzzles, well my 3yr old did puzzles & my 18 month old fired bits of puzzles all around da rm... We played wit cardboard boxes... And we did some colourin too... They like 'helpin' me wit cookin & playdough, paintin & stickin pics we cut out from toy mags onto paper bags it cut n2 big squares or circles goes down a treat too but is so messy... I feel so guilty & pretty crap when i dont play wit them but im so glad they hav each other
Thanks for this thread by da way cause im gettin ideas from ye def gona Make houses for da action men tomorrow

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