The countdown is on to the start of school! With the knowledge that school is almost here, so is the dread at the school routine every morning and the worry about whether we will manage to get our kids out of the house without meltdowns, yelling and forgetting something important. I have 2 children I need to get out of the house within 30 minutes thanks to VERY early school start times. So I know all too well how difficult it is! Given that I am an old hand at 30 minute school mornings read on to learn how to reduce school morning stress.
There are a few things we can do to ease the stress and ensure we get our kids out of the house without falling into a puddle of stress when they leave.
1) Prepare your kids for their school routine before school starts.
Sit down with your kids and discuss how you want your school routine to look each morning. Set expectations on what their jobs are for getting ready and how you will be helping. Getting them involved in making a “Getting ready for school” chart can really help. You have made clear the morning expectations and gotten them involved and invested in the process. Make the chart reusable every day so that they can tick off when they have completed each task and check what their next one is. You can then reward them each day for a job well done. This reinforces the positive behavior you are looking for.
2) Make sure your kids are well-rested.
Put your kids to bed at a reasonable time each night. Ensuring that they are well rested each day means they will wake up happy and ready to start the day. If they are tired they are more likely to be cranky and fight getting ready in the morning. In the morning make sure they get up at the right time, not only to ensure they are well-rested but to make sure they have the time they need to get ready in the morning.
3) Organize what you can the night before.
Think about what parts of the routine can be done the night before, so that there are fewer tasks in the morning. Give your kids a bath, or shower, in the evening. Prepare their lunches the night before and stick them in the fridge. Then all that needs to happen is they are put in their school bag in the morning. Get the kids to pack as much of their bag as they can the night before.
Have things like shoes, jackets, and hats sitting by the door so that they can easily grab them and put them on as they walk out the door.
4) Be focused.
Keep your kids focused on getting ready for school each morning. Don’t add extra distractions like watching TV or playing on their iPad (even whilst eating breakfast!). This is likely to mean they take more time and even instigate negotiations of “just 5 minutes more” when they really should be getting dressed and packing their bags.
It can also be helpful to have them dress before breakfast (which is often the opposite to what we do).
Taking all these steps will ensure a stress-free school morning for both you and your kids. Let’s make getting ready for school a pleasure, not a pain!
If you need help with solving your child’s sleep problems, please feel free to contact Mylee at Little Big Dreamers today. Or you can schedule an appointment here. Have you had a chance to join my free community where parents come together to discuss child sleep issues? Join here!