Sometimes my kid’s natural response to any question is ‘no.’ It has been explained to me as a part of a developmental stage that is all about establishing independence. To counter that reaction I have found myself resorting to bribery and extortion. I have been scolded by friends who say that there are very few times when you should ask a preschooler anything anyway, most of the time you should be telling them stuff: “Do you want to go to the park?” should actually be rephrased as: “ we are going to the park.”
Anyway, barring an out and out dictatorship at our home; I have come up with one approach that involves enticing him with new activities. One successful one was encouraging him to come for a hike by giving him a magnifying glass to take along. I bought one at the dollar store and it was a simple and inexpensive way to encourage him to get outside and to spark his curiosity. It also helped us keep him moving down the trail as we found something new to spy with the magnifying glass around every turn; from unfurling fiddleheads to bugs and old man’s beard.