Thursday, May 2, 2013

Taming the Crazy Morning Routine

I don't know about other parents out there, but I feel like I'm herding a bunch of cats every morning trying to get them to eat, get dressed, brush their teeth and get out the door in time to catch the bus. Yesterday was one of those not-so-good days where I felt like I was yelling at the kids from the time they got up till I put them on the bus. I don't like to do that; I don't like to feel like the "mean mommy"...and it stresses me out.

So after the kids were on the bus, I sat down and searched for ideas on making the morning routine less stressful and annoying. I found this article called 3 Tips to get your Morning Dawdler Moving.  Basically the 3 tips are 1. Put kids in charge of their morning. 2. Tame the morning nag-fest by implementing “when-then” routines. and 3. Get yourself up and ready first. I found other articles with 10 tips and such, but these 3 seemed like the right ones for our family.

I then sat down and made a schedule for the kids' morning routine. This is the "when-then" routine where the kids know step by step what they should do from the time they get up till they walk out the door. My kids mostly know this already, but the times next to the items was new for them. If they know exactly what time they are to do a particular task, they can make that happen without thinking they have infinite time to eat their breakfast.

To implement #1, I then went out and bought alarm clocks for both of them.  I taught them how to use them and let them choose what time they wanted to wake up in the morning. The Girl chose to get up earlier than the schedule so she would have extra time to do her tasks. The Boy wanted to sleep as long as possible. But they made that choice on their own. They then carried the alarm clocks around with them all morning and referred to them and their chart to see what they were supposed to be doing.

End result was both got finished with everything 10 minutes early and got some extra playtime before school, and I didn't have to yell or remind even once! That is a total success in my book!

I also made a bed time routine chart...we'll see if that makes bed time easier as well. I'll keep you posted!

1 comment:

  1. I love this, Angie - I had a morning of herding cats today and I will be buying alarm clocks later after work! - Holly Lambert in AZ



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