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School mornings are typically quite rushed when the entire family needs to get ready at the same time, have breakfast, and go about their routines. There are bound to be unforeseen delays, unwanted commotion, and occasional meltdowns, and it can be quite a task to pull off morning routines successfully. Forming a habit and a routine can make the task easier, and its implementation, simpler. It may also ensure that the family starts the day off on a happy and positive note, rather than complaining and grumbling. Here are some practical ways in which parents can set morning routines for their kids.
10 Ways to Set a Great Morning Routine for Children
Establishing a clear and structured morning routine for kids may assist them to stay on track and kickstart the day on the right note. Here are some helpful ways to manage a great morning routine for children:
1. Prepare a Morning Routine Schedule
Chalking out a clear-cut structured morning routine can help kids in being better prepared for the mornings. It can also help in developing a sense of security, trust, and safety. Structured routines help make kids aware of what they are expected to do. They can help them move through their morning responsibilities without rushing. Involving kids in the decision-making process is also recommended as it helps kids feel included and get a sense of control over their routines.
2. Keep it Simple
Maintaining a simple routine that kids can manage is highly recommended. Parents can prioritise the essential tasks and leave out the non-essentials to be done later in the day. Offering choices to kids can make them feel empowered and less argumentative, and it is a great way to get the morning activities done. Parents may allow their kids to choose between a quick yet healthy breakfast with milk and cereal or an elaborate breakfast, a choice to wear the shoes first or have the breakfast first, use the parents’ bathrooms instead of their own, etc.
3. Get Things Prepared the Night Before
Parents must encourage kids to get some school prep work done, such as packing the school bag according to the timetable, laying out the uniform, etc., the night before, to save some time in the morning. Parents can also tick-off some tasks in advance, such as making work for lunch, or washing the lunchboxes and keeping them ready. Every detail you can close the night before will help you save precious minutes the next morning.
4. Ensure Kids Get Enough Sleep
It is important for the parents to consider that their kids are getting enough sleep at night. Children usually require about 8 to 10 hours of good sleep depending on their age, physical activity and other factors. A proper night’s sleep can help them wake up feeling well-rested and energetic.
5. Wake Up Before Your Kids Wake Up
Getting up 15 to 20 minutes before the rest of the household can aid parents set up the entire family for a fruitful morning ahead. The best part of waking up before everyone else is that it helps one get some much-needed time to make the desired transition to a fully-awake and active mode. Formulating morning rituals can help parents begin their day effectively. It is also essential that they follow a regular bedtime routine so that they get adequate rest and sleep as well.
6. Connect With the Kids
Morning resistance is a common issue most parents experience when trying to get their kids ready for the day. Establishing a connection with kids by indulging in some relaxed snuggle time while waking them up can help parents cheer them up early in the morning. It can also motivate kids to readily cooperate and conduct themselves well.
7. Make Morning Transitions Easy
Mornings are all about transitions; kids can find it difficult to make these transitions all by themselves. As mentioned earlier, pampering kids with kisses and hugs when waking them up can help parents begin their day on a happy note. However, many also have a tough time getting their kids out of their beds after they are awake. Coaxing them gently, holding their hands and helping them get up can work. Singing a catchy song and displaying excitement to jump or dance can also help them get the kids out of their beds in a jiffy. Parents can also check if there’s a need for them to be around when their kids are going about their morning routines to offer help and get them done on time. And, while all of this is being managed, there’s one thing every parent must avoid, giving orders and unnecessary instructions. They usually dampen the mood, and over time, might leave kids feeling dispirited.
8. Assign Places for Things
Most parents find it difficult to keep their kids’ schedules due to a lack of order and discipline when it comes to storing things, such as shoes, stockings, lunch boxes, water bottles, school bags, books, stationery, etc. Designating a location for these essentials helps children and their parents locate them instantly. Of course, kids also need to get into the habit of keeping things in their designated places, but once that is sorted, they will not miss any precious time in the morning. Parents can do the same for utility items, such as the umbrella, keys, and phones.
9. Remain Cool and Collected
Parents must try to remain calm and composed under all circumstances. Appearing rushed-up and frantic in the morning can negatively affect kids. Therefore, one must refrain from resorting to screaming and yelling at kids and starting the day on a panicky note. It often leaves kids feeling anxious, and sometimes even low, the entire day. Instead, calmly explaining that they need to pitch in and take ownership of certain tasks can work wonders. Modelling patient behaviour can elicit better responses from kids.
10. Talk About Natural Rewards
Kids getting dressed on time is the parents’ priority, not necessarily the kids’. Acknowledging children’s sincere efforts to tackle their morning routines with a few words of praise will boost their morale and motivate them to do their tasks without confrontations. Positively reinforcing good behaviour by making kids aware of natural rewards is a better way of teaching them responsibility. For example, highlighting the natural reward of getting ready on time – kids may get some extra time to enjoy their breakfast, more playtime before school begins, etc.
By focussing on providing a pleasant start, parents can create effective morning routines for kids and transform their mornings into fun, happy, connecting times. Getting all family members to contribute can facilitate the smooth execution of the routines and set the kids up for better things in their lives.
Also Read: Good Habits To Teach To Children