My toddler won’t wear a facemask!
In these unprecedented times, there are a lot of changes for your toddler, too. Your toddler should most certainly be wearing a facemask. However, use breathable materials if your toddler is going to wear a homemade facemask. Otherwise, your little one may have trouble breathing.
Here are some tips on how to encourage your toddler to wear a mask:
Give your toddler a fun mask. Don’t be boring.
If your toddler gets upset about wearing a mask, a great way to encourage them is to pick out a cool one! There are so many people making masks and creating them at home. There is no reason to wear a plain, boring surgical mask. Let your toddler pick out a cool cartoon facemask or superhero mask. These more playful facemasks can let your toddler see how fun wearing a facemask can be!
You can go on social media and find people all around your area making masks. If no one near you in making any, go online to purchase one and have it shipped to your house. This way, the next time you have to leave the house with your toddler, they will most likely remind you about the super cool mask you got them! Rather than you arguing with them to put it on.
Turn wearing a facemask into an adventure!
Kids always love an adventure or to feel like a superhero. This is the perfect time to relate wearing a mask to being a superhero. Batman wears a mask and so does Spiderman. When you let your toddler know this fact, they will want to wear one too!
Even letting your toddlers see superheroes wearing facemasks can encourage them to keep it on. Tell your toddler Spiderman can’t take off his mask or else it will reveal his identity, and he won’t have superpowers anymore. If they take their mask off, they won’t have superpowers either.
Making it an adventure to keep the mask on will make it fun for them. This way, they will be more inclined to wear the mask.
Let your toddler’s stuffed animal wear a mask too!
A great way to encourage your toddler to wear a mask is to let them put a mask on their favorite stuffed animal. When they put it on their stuffed animal, they will be excited to come out in public matching their best friend. This is a fun way to show them that wearing a mask is a team deal and that we are all in this together.
Put your toddler in charge of ensuring their stuffed animal doesn’t take off the mask while you guys are out. Making them feel like they are in charge of their stuffed animal will take their mind off having to wear one themselves.
This is also an excellent opportunity to teach them how to be a leader. Explain to them that their stuffed animal is watching them and setting a good example.
Turn wearing facemasks into a game.
Kids love games and usually will follow tedious or aggravating tasks better if adults turn it into a mission or a game. Next time you’re about to leave the house and it’s time to put the mask on, try this:
Remix existing games
Get really creative by creating any game your child loves to play. However, the game must include your toddler wearing the mask. Tell them you’re on a secret mission and have to hide your identity in order to complete the task.
You can even tell them your on the hunt for Santa Claus! Explain how you must wear a mask so Santa doesn’t see you. If you are wearing the mask, you might see him out at the grocery store, but if you take it off, he won’t come out.
The “counting facemasks” game
You can also play the “count how many people have a mask on” game! If your child is learning how to count, this is a great way to work on numbers while taking their mind off of actually wearing the mask.
Reward your toddler for wearing a mask.
The classic reward system. Parents have been using this technique for centuries, and it always works time and time again. Before you head out of the house, tell your toddler there is a reward if they wear their mask. To earn this reward, the mask must be worn in public.
This approach can get your little one fired up to keep it on and not argue with you about it. It can be an ice cream reward or even a trip outside to play their favorite game. Kids love to know they can be rewarded for their excellent behavior. Letting them know ahead of time will give them an extra boost to want to keep the mask on so that they can get a treat when they get back home.
Simply explain why we wear facemasks now.
If your toddler is a little older, it may be easier just to explain what is going on in a kid-friendly way. You can relate what is going on to a story they may be familiar with. Try to compare it to a cartoon they like. A great way to do this is even getting their toys and explain in “play.” Expressing the importance and gravity of the issue can be helpful. Do your part in helping your toddler understand why it’s essential to stay healthy and safe.
A lot of kids feel better when they know they are safe. Explaining to your little one that you two are doing this because it will keep you safe and that everyone, including their favorite characters and people, is doing it will help. You can sit down and draw some of their favorite characters wearing masks to show them that even they are doing it.
Times like these can be very hard on parents with toddlers at home because let’s face it; it’s hard to get them to want to wear their shoes out. Much less a mask. Making it fun can encourage them to go with the flow.