Parents often ask me how they can get their young children to listen. Listening demands social skills and thinking skills, something that is just developing in young children. Remember a child's job is to explore and experiment. Be realistic about your child's development and practice breaking tasks down to simple pieces of information. Kristen Hopkins writes in an Article Tips on Teaching Preschoolers to Listen:
"Listening skills need to be taught as part of language development. Listening requires attention. Since attention skills are just developing, preschoolers use much of their mental energy when they engage in activity. They can attend to one thing at a time, and it is often difficult for them to shift gears to attend to something new."