Tuesday, August 24, 2010

How to entertain a sick child


Ok, I'm beginning to think I'm an expert on this subject now, considering how easily my Sonny Boy falls ill. And this past one week has been quite a lesson for me and I hope i can put it down so even others find some solace in it, god forbid, if they find themselves in such corners. I guess most of my suggestions would apply to toddlers rather than older children. And more so if you are in a confined space and need some activity to keep your kids going.

1. The beginning of the day is when a sick child perhaps has the most energy, so save any kind of physical activity for then.
2. When i say physical activity, I mean within the constraints of the illness and depending on how willing the child is to play.
3. A little bit of cricket in the hall with a plastic ball (so your TV wont get hit!) or playing catch is not too bad an idea (if you are not to take him/her outdoors/ bad weather/ fever). It's a bit of running around and working up of appetite for lunch. Otherwise they are too inactive to feel any hunger. A bad thing when they also need to stomach medicine.
4. A spot of TV or nursery rhymes mid morning will keep them entertained without you necessarily involved, so you can get some work done around the place.It also offers them rest after some playing about.
5. Save story-telling, showing pictures in a book or reading from it for the sleepy afternoon. Or if you like, make it some favourite song. Something soothing after some harsh medicine and just before snooze time to keep illness-induced nightmares at bay during an afternoon nap.
6. Post-sleep they may feel a bit "up to it". But may still have some sleep hangover. Colouring should wake them up, and yet not tire them out. It's a good time to bring out the toy bin too.
7. If your toddler or child fancies them, simple jigsaw puzzles they themselves can put together is another great way to keep them entertained during illness.
8. Buy a small new toy or book to take away boredom and monotony. It will create enough curiosity to kill a few more hours.
9. Clay/playdough, a bit of gummy atta...maybe even scissors and paper (for older kids) -- something to keep their itching-to-do-something hands busy.
10. Favourite toys/dolls should be around during illness -- they can be great comforters.
11. When children are sick, I believe they like to be kissed and cuddled. And we all know of the healing power of touch. So just cuddle up, take them in your lap and maybe sing an old song grandma or mom sang for you. Or tell them a story they don't have in their books.
12. Any sort of sorting game may also keep them occupied. Just a few coins and two tumblers or bowls to put them in as they count, or pour from one to another -- they also love the noise it makes!
13. If they are not tired from a fever, you could just blow up a few balloons for him/her to monkey around with -- the colour is good on the eyes, and a bit of noise will hopefully not make them cranky.
 14. Peek a boo played in nooks of the house I think also cheers them up.
15. For a change you can be the TV. Act out rhymes and see their joy when mom/dad begin goofing around trying to imitate "Goosey gander" or "Teddy bear".
16. And if they are not feeling up to sound/noise, movement. just sit them in bed and do the eternal fav -- blow bubbles.

As you may have well guessed, these are mostly things I've been doing with Sonny Boy this last week.And as I put it down, I've realised there are some more things I can still do.
Finally, as much as we may plan and decide, when they are ill, kids will want and have their way. So if they want to watch TV when you are free to do puzzles with them, god save us moms!


Anonymous said...

very timely!!!

Forever mother said...

Hi Anonymous
I'm assuming "timely" means your child is ill...I hope both baby and you are feeling better now and doing fine (however fine you can manage when illness strikes). Take care and hang in there.