- For toddlers, high chair = eating. If you put something on that tray, they don't care if it's a hamburger or a crayon, they are going to eat it. So, don't do crafts in the high chair. Most of the Paint & Prozac crafts are "contained" in a box or in a bag. Why? Because it can me created in the living room without ruining the carpet. What if we are doing a project that isn't "contained"? I lay down a large blanket in the living room (just make sure your little one sits down and doesn't run off the blanket). Cookie sheets are excellent to use as a table for painting or play dough on the blanket. Plus it can just go in the dishwasher...bonus!
- If you must do a project in the high chair (like finger painting) let your little one have their pacifier. Usually I only allow binkies at bedtime or when I can't stand the screaming anymore or when Finley finds a long lost binky under the couch. Sorry, tangent. In theory I only allow binkies at bed time. But if that beloved thing is in her mouth it's not coming out...not even to lick a paint brush.
- Plan crafts for just after a meal or snack. We usually do crafts right after breakfast or morning snack. If they are full, they seem to be less likely to put stuff in their mouths.
- RELAX (don't you just love how I always throw that one in there?)! Everything is non-toxic (right?) but it certainly doesn't taste good. If your little one has a couple tastes of paint and it's awful they are probably going to stop. If you react by jumping up and yelling it's probably going to encourage the behavior. How fun is it to get mom all worked up? Toddlers love to get a big reaction so don't give them one. Just calmly remove the art supply from their mouth and clean it up.