The holidays are approaching I am preparing my kiddo for the dreaded flight. As a parent flying with my 19 month old, high energy and head-strong son alone you can imagine all the things that can go wrong. Here are some things I have been practicing these past few weeks to prepare.
1. When flying we are often waiting in lines. This can be hard for my son or any kid for that matter. So we have been practicing “waiting.” Lately I have been putting in various settings and situations where I need him to wait. I prompt him to “wait” then slowly increase the time and reinforce with praise. Jack loves to be told he is doing a good job waiting. If your kiddo isn’t motivated by praise try giving them a favorite item instead and pair it with the praise of good job waiting!
2. The other common demand will be to “walk with me.” Jack is a runner! If he sees wide-open spaces he likes to just take off! As a parent this is so scary. You always need to be ready to run too. I have been teaching him “walk with me” the same as “waiting.” This one is a little more challenging for him so for back up…I bought a leash. I am that parent. The parent I never thought I’d be. I will keep you posted on how that goes.
3. Lately, Jack is really into movies. He doesn’t get much access to TV so this will likely be my biggest motivator for good behavior on this trip. I have downloaded some movies for the iPad and got him his own set of monkey headphones! Fingers crossed.
4. Lastly, I have recently learned Jack loves to color. I have decreased his access to this activity and bought him new crayons and coloring books for the flight. Reducing his access to the item before the trip will likely keep him interested in the item on the plane for longer.
As much as we prepare there are always things that come up and we need to be ready with a backup plan….mine is melatonin for Jack and an airplane cocktail for mommy. Wish me luck! Happy Holidays!