I posted this in another forum and got a lot of good feedback on it. Here is a more formal write up on a game I play with my kids at home. The Quiet Loud Game.
I have 2 young kids at home. One is almost 4 and the other is 17 months. The 4 year old would often make lots on noise like kids do and our attempts to quiet her down were not working very well. Our problem was she didn't truly understand the concept of quiet. She knew she was doing something wrong, but had no idea what. That did not work very well for either of us. I came up with a new game to play.
I turn the radio on to some music and turn the volume up a bit. We run around the house being loud. I yell the work loud or noisy several times and we all jump, and stomp, and scream, and yell, and slam doors, and bang on the floor. Then we start a loud count down from 3, 2, 1 and then I whisper the word quiet as I turn the volume on the radio way down.
Then we all whisper, and tip toe, and sneak, and shush, and softly open and close doors. Only making quiet sounds. Then we start a soft count down from 3, 2, 1 and then I yell the work loud as I turn the radio back up.
We repeat this process several times until someone starts to wear out (usually me) and we end it while we are all quiet. I tell them they did a great job and we all give each other high fives.
Not only does this help teach them the concept of loud and quiet, it also gives them an outlet for that noise. And we all had a lot of fun doing it. I made a special point to do all the stuff we consider loud when doing the loud part.