Nothing is cuter (or harder to predict) than a little kid all dressed up for family photos! With some help from these prompts, you can pose small children easily and set yourself up to get adorable shots everyone will love.
1. Criss-cross applesauce
Anytime I can have a kiddo sitting down, I choose to! Sitting criss-cross applesauce eliminates the “get up and run away” factor. This is perfect for those unpredictable toddlers and preschoolers.
2. Hug their knees
This pose contains everything – arms, legs, and torso! Have the child sit on their bottom and wrap their arms around their knees. It’s an adorable look and keeps those arms and legs from flailing about!
3. Spin around and stop
Sometimes trying to contain an energetic kiddo is a recipe for disaster. So instead of fighting the movement… embrace it! Let rambunctious kiddos spin around a few times and then snap the photo when you yell stop! This is one of the best ways to get a full, genuine smile.
4. Arms folded in front
I love this pose for little boys, as it’s a bit more masculine than the other poses. This is a fun one to try with elementary-aged kids or younger children who are really good listeners.
This prompt is perfect for squirmy babies! Instruct the parents to keep looking at you and smiling, but have them “bounce, bounce, bounce” the baby and then stop! You’ll get good giggles out of the baby and they’ll be less fussy thanks to the bouncing.
6. Laying down
I always bring a blanket to family sessions because laying down is a great pose option for kids of all ages. Littles can lay on their bellies and prop their hands under their chin for a ridiculously cute look. And I really love to have preteen girls lay down and look up at you. So sweet! Laying down also keeps kids stationary… and that’s always a win.
7. Walk it out
If you’ve got a little who just can’t stay still, have them hold their parent’s hand and go for a walk. Or they can try to explore on their own! If they are walking by themselves, give them some space, but keep your camera trained on them to capture those creative moments.
Baby pose! Have both parents look at each other or at their baby, hold the baby under the belly with both arms, and swing! They’ll swing toward the camera and away from the camera, giving you plenty of opportunity to capture some sweet older-infant or young toddler smiles.
When you’ve got the whole family sitting down together, prompt them to go all out with a tickle fight. (Photographer beware: things can go awry rather quickly… so snap fast!) This option elicits big, genuine smiles and tons of natural laughter. Even the parents will get into a good tickle fight!
10. Talk about mom or dad
Get down on the child’s level and quietly ask them to tell you their favorite thing about their mom or dad. This is an emotional moment for the parents and the perfect way to capture those soft, sweet moments every parent wants to remember.