How To Establish a Morning Routine For Kids
- JWB Post
- October 2, 2015
Getting an entire family up, dressed, fed before setting them ready for their respective jobs is a task in itself. Below are few tips that will surely help you start your day off on the right track:
1. Make sure everyone is getting enough sleep
Here is a handy chart that breaks down how much sleep kids need depending on their age. You can determine your child’s appropriate bedtime by subtracting the number of hours from the time you need to wake them up in order to get out the door in time. So, for a two year old who needs to be up by 7am, they need to be in bed by 7pm.
2. Prepare the night before
Prepare breakfast the night before:
- Pack lunches: Young kids love them and they keep things interesting, not to mention relatively easy to fix.
- Choose clothes: Let your child pick out their own clothes the night before or keep a selection of appropriate school clothes at their level so they can quickly choose their outfit in the morning.
- Assign a box/hook/shelf for all of the school essentials: so you aren’t searching for backpacks, shoes, lunch boxes etc. each morning. Tip: Assign a place for your briefcase/keys/wallet/phone as well.
3. Get up before your kid
If you set your alarm for at least 15 – 30 minutes before your kids wake up, establishing a morning routine for kids becomes so much easier and you’ll be setting the whole family up for a successful morning. Ideally you will be showered, dressed and packed up for the day.
4. Make a morning routine chart
If you have younger kids use pictures instead of just words in your morning routine chart and include all of the things that need to get done like:
- Brushing teeth
- Combing hair
- Washing face
- Getting dressed
- Eating Breakfast
- Putting shoes on
- Grab backpack/lunchbox
- Head out the door
5. Put the “When … Then” approach to use
A When-Then Routine is a tool to help your kids stay motivated to get everything done in the morning—even the “yucky” stuff like brushing teeth and getting dressed. It structures your morning so that all the not-so-fun tasks are completed before the most desirable part of the morning like breakfast (or morning playtime, TV time, etc.). For example, “when you get dressed, brush your teeth and make your bed, then we have breakfast.”
6. Remain calm and connected
Your kids can sense when you are rushed and frantic and they will slow down and resist. If you are following all of the tips above you shouldn’t be rushed but things can come up at the last minute. Kids tend to mirror your actions and tone so if you find yourself yelling a lot in the morning or showing frustration in physical ways (pointing, huffing and puffing etc.), try to really focus on your attitude and use a calm voice.
7. Make weekends special
The whole family looks forward to these mornings so we are all motivated to get up and get out the door and start our weekend feeling energized and excited to spend time together as a family.
Excerpts have been taken from this article.