From Packing To The Curb: 5 Fun Ways To Get Your Toddler Ready To Move

Posted on: 22 September 2015

If you are packing or unpacking with a toddler in the house, you might be concerned about keeping them out of your way while you get important tasks done. Below are a few ways to get your toddler involved in the packing process, which will make your job easier and help your child get used to the concept of packing and moving. 

Let Your Toddler Help With Labeling 

Toddlers enjoy imitating important adult tasks. Instead of shooing them out of the way when you need to pack, you can harness their drive to be helpful and get them involved with the packing and labeling tasks. A few washable markers and a page of box labels can keep your little one entertained long enough for you to get a few boxes packed. The surfaces of packing boxes can inspire your toddler's creativity, and allowing them the freedom to draw on their boxes helps improve their fine motor skills while making it easy to tell which boxes belong in your toddler's room. 

Even if you are using washable markers, it is a good idea to keep your toddler in the same room as you to prevent last minute murals on the walls that you will have to clean before moving out. Consider giving your child a different colored marker for each room, so you can easily see from afar which boxes belong where. 

Practice Packing and Unpacking 

Toddlers enjoy putting things in containers and taking them out again, so packing should be a natural toddler activity. Unfortunately, getting your toddler to keep all of the items in a box until you are ready to seal it can be difficult. To avoid a power struggle while packing, you should give your child their own box and several items to pack into it. While they may still be interested in what you are doing, you should be able to distract them with their own box. 

Try to do this a week or so before you begin packing to help ease the anxiety your child may feel when they see their belongings being packed away. By making them understand that you will pack their belongings, move them, and then unpack them, your child will feel secure that they will get their treasured toys back.  

Create a Maze With Packed Boxes 

Empty boxes look like an excellent play house to toddlers. Many moving boxes are the perfect size to hide in and play peek-a-boo. If you do not want your toddler destroying your boxes with their games before you get the opportunity to fill them, consider building a maze out of already filled boxes. Instead of stacking them neatly in one room, create winding paths with the boxes. While the boxes are set up, take a break to play hide and seek, hiding behind the boxes and popping out to surprise your toddler. This models appropriate play behavior that will is not destructive or distracting. 

Build a Fort While Unpacking 

When it is time to unpack your boxes, you can allow your toddler to play in the empty boxes before you disassemble them. If you build a fort with the empty boxes, your child will have something fun to play with until you get their room set up. Additionally, they may want to help you unpack if it means that they get to add more boxes to their fort. 

Get Crafty 

Many of the boxes you use may not be reusable after your move. While you can recycle these boxes, consider using them for various crafts instead. You can build a dollhouse or construct a costume from your old boxes, creating a toy that will keep your child amused for months. 

Packing and unpacking can provide hours of entertainment for a toddler. If you give yourself plenty of time to pack, it can be an enjoyable process for you and your child. If you need other moving tips, you can find lots of additional reading online.