If you put your child in a room FULL of toys and sat in it with him or her, YOU would still be the best toy in the room as far as the child was concerned. A toy might intrigue a child for a short amount of time but given the choice between playing with something inanimate or interacting with an adult they care about, they will always go for the adult. You are far more interesting and you have many more possible reactions than even the most sophisticated of toys.
Your attention is extremely important to your child. (To a baby, attention is a survival issue!) So consider how your child gets your attention. Do they get more when they are making bad choices or ‘being naughty’ or do they get it when they are behaving in a desirable way?
A tiny shift in the focus of your attention can bring about changes in behaviour pretty quickly. Do you give your child attention for doing the, albeit obvious, things that you want them to do? Do you praise them for going to bed without a fuss or cuddle them when they remember to wash their hands? Do you show them appreciation when they say, ‘thank you’ automatically or tidy up something properly? Do you compliment them when they listen attentively or wait patiently? If not, give it a go and watch their behaviour change for the better.