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7 Ways to Keep a Toddler Focused

Nobody ever said keeping a toddler focused was easy but mastering good concentration skills is one of the most important things to teach your child. This will help in the early years with milestone learning such as potty training and in later life.

7. Give them a task

This might be asking them to help you find an item when shopping. This gives them a feeling of independence and importance to know that they are contributing to a successful trip. Make sure the item in the same aisle as you so that you can keep your child under a watchful eye.

6. Create Active not Passive Play

Give your child an activity with a purpose at set times throughout the day. This might be completing a simple puzzle or colouring in a picture and staying in the lines. You don’t need to worry about creating this level of focus all day every day as this may backfire and it’s important to have realistic expectations of young children. However, a little structure goes a long way.

5. Clean Up

One of the most challenging and important parts of teaching good focus is to make sure your child’s environment doesn’t distract them. Kill two birds with one stone by asking your toddler to help you tidy up their playroom.

Use your judgement depending on how old your child is and how much instruction they can take but always limit their task to something specific, e.g. put your Lego back in the box. An instruction such as “clear up the room” is too generic. They may become bored, frustrated or confused by the task and give up before it’s even begun. Always remember to praise them when they have completed the task.

4. Play to their Strengths

It’s an exercise in futility to try and get a child to concentrate on something that just doesn’t engage their attention. There will always be certain toys, games and activities that your child prefers, e.g. playing with dolls or doing a puzzle. To this end, encourage them to do a little bit more play each time to keep their focus for longer. This leads into the next point…

…3. Develop their Listening Skills

Listening and learning is a key part of mastering milestones so make sure that the activities you choose for your toddler include a healthy level of listening. This might be reading a book and asking them simple questions about the characters or asking them questions about the activities that they are doing. Again, you don’t need to go over the top but using a healthy portion of their playtime to improve focus is important.

2. Pick Your Moments

When it comes to milestones such as potty training, focus and concentration are key. Save specific items that engage their imagination for such moments, e.g. have bathroom books that are only read in the bathroom when they need to use the Family Seat and certain songs that you will only sing during pee/poo time. This teaches disciplines, boundaries and focus all in one which will have a positive knock-on effect on their milestone learning too.

1. Create a Quiet Space

Focus goes hand in hand with, you guessed it, independence as a crucial part of milestone learning. To this end, it can be very effective to create a quiet corner in your home where your toddler can play alone and complete focused tasks such as puzzles and colouring. This is especially valuable when you have a busy household with lots of other siblings to avoid your little one feeling overwhelmed and getting distracted from their activities. This is also a great place and time to just talk with your child and ask them questions - it is always surprising what can come out of a little conversation.


The Family Seat Progress Chart and Door Hanger are a great way to set up a rewards-based system for potty training. Every Family Seat comes complete with these potty-training essentials and a 10-Year Guarantee.

For advice on any aspect of potty training and for any help purchasing a Family Seat, email our team at . Family Seat supports the children’s communication charity I CAN, who are experts in helping children to develop the language, speech and communication skills that they need to thrive in our 21st-century world. We donate 50p to I CAN on each and every seat purchased through the official Family Seat website.

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