© Lili Gaufrette
There's no point trying to hold your child's attention for more than 10 minutes: any more than that time and you need to change activity or give them a few minutes' rest if you want them to put their efforts into something.
Reading, for example, shouldn't last for more than 10 minutes. Stick to this rule and your child will retain more of what you read to them.
Switching between intellectual activities, physical activities and periods of inactivity will prevent your child from getting tired. This is why at nursery they alternate between a multitude of activities and never spend longer than 10 minutes on something.
Play lots! Games develop children's attention span, reasoning and imagination. In other words, by cutting themselves off from the outside world and submerging themselves in the world of games, they're concentrating. All kinds of games are good: board games, drawing and guessing games, role-play, etc.