How to Capture the Attention of Four Little Boys

Mom reading to boys

A few weeks ago my friend asked if her two little boys could come play at our house while she went on a Scout field trip with one of her older sons. We were very excited for them to come, we love play dates!

It was the most beautiful sunshiny day, and I thought for sure the boys would just want to play outside for the short time their mom would be gone. As soon as they got to our home, they saw our fun, loud toy chain saw, and equally as loud, and fun, toy weed-eater (or edger, as my littlest likes to call it). Without a second’s delay, they took them straight outside, and each had a turn using it. BUT in less than a second, they were also done. And next thing I knew, they were back in the house with their shoes off, looking for something to do. So I had my boys show them some other outside toys that were sure to catch their attention. I couldn’t believe it when, in less than five minutes, they were back inside with their shoes off. (They were really good at remembering to take their shoes off in the house.)

This was just flabbergasting to me. When it is warm out and I open the door, my boys are outside in a flash and I can hardly get them back in again. I thought for sure with two more imaginative minds all the boys would be set for hours.

Boys in cardboard fort

Especially on a day that is too bright to see.

I decided that I would take initiative and line them up with something they would really enjoy–soccer. Or at least kicking a ball around the grass. We set out two cans of apple sauce on one end of the yard for a goal, and two more cans on the opposite side. I brought the ball out and thought I had certainly found the winning game. They started taking turns kicking the ball and then being the goalies, but only the oldest boy, who is five, really knew what he was doing. I didn’t think it would be an issue to know which goal was whose and who should be on whose team (there were only 4 little boys ages 5, 4, 3 and 2,) but it turned out that they all wanted to be the one kicking and we couldn’t figure out how to settle on the idea to just kick it back and forth between two cans of apple sauce. Funny boys. So, with all that explaining you would probably think our little soccer game lasted at least a little while, right? Maybe at least a half hour? Well, it was only about 5 minutes too.

Boy in dirt

This is what usually happens when we let them outside.

This time, when the boys started trickling inside to take off their shoes, I didn’t persuade them otherwise. We picked up our outside stuff and went in. They found our toy train and did some puzzles–for about five minutes, haha. And then my oldest, true to his nature, saw one of his picture books on our end table and asked if I would read it to him. I asked the other boys if they would all like me to read to them. They all scrambled to pack in next to me on our little love seat, and the five of us sat and read a whole pile of books. They sat there engaged and thoroughly enjoying reading time for 45 minutes!

Cousins on a couch

Just imagine me in the middle of these boys on the couch with a book!

As much as our family loves books, I still didn’t expect reading to be the favorite activity of our play date on a beautiful, sunshiny day with four energetic boys. Yet, reflecting on the morning’s experience after our friends left, I felt more convinced than ever that reading would be a favorite activity for so many more children if they were given a chance to sit with a parent, brother, aunt, grandma or grandpa and be read to. That’s what I love most about Bookroo–that each day, we’re making it easier for children to spend more time reading with their parents and loved ones.

If it’s been a while since you’ve sat and read with your child, let us help you get started. Sign up now with our summer kickoff discount for 20% off your 3, 6, or 12 month subscription. Just use code SUMMER2017 at checkout. Who knows, you may just discover like I did that reading will be one of your top summer activities!

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