I run lots of photo shoots in Toddler groups in the Oxfordshire area. Generally at these I work with babies and toddlers with the occassional pre-schooler or home-schooled child. However it is more rare to get a large family photo shoot at a toddler group, as the older children will be at school.
This weekend I ran a family photo shoot, and had a family of four children come along for some photos. As a parent of four children myself I know that getting a photo of them all looking in the same direction is a challenge, let alone all looking cheerful. However as these children were slightly older we took it as a great opportunity to have fun, and had some funny poses of them lifting each other. Once we had made the photo shoot fun then we got some fantastic shots of them all enjoying themselves, and the photos really reflect their enjoyment of the session.
I may have to make a fool of myself in front of the parents, but it gets the kids laughing, and then natural and happy photos follow.