It’s that time of the year again – when each morning turns into a desperate race against time to get the kids ready, out the door and off to school. This often chaotic morning ritual has the capacity to leave even the most seasoned professional pulling out their hair. To help alleviate this, we have put together some tips to help beat the morning rush:
The night before
- Make and pack lunch
To ease the congestion of tasks in the morning, try making your kids lunch in the evening. Those sandwiches and apples will feel right at home in the fridge overnight.
- Organise uniforms/clothes and school bags
There is nothing worse than trying to find a fresh pair of socks at the crack of dawn. Head – or better yet, send the kids – to the wardrobe the night before and get together their outfits for the next day. Make sure bags are packed with (completed) homework, any overdue library books and permission slips. Oh… and don’t forget to ask the dog nicely to return any school shoes that he has turned into a chew toy.
- Create a bedtime routine
Kids need sleep. It is necessary for their development, both physically and psychologically. Make sure a reasonable bedtime is set (and adhered to) so your kids get enough sleep. It is also a good idea for parents to set themselves a (flexible) bedtime to wake up fresh for the day ahead.
- Invest in multiple alarm clocks
In addition to your own alarm clock, buy clocks for the kids. This will get them in the habit of setting alarms, getting themselves up in the morning and it acts as a safeguard for when you press the snooze button too many times.
In the morning
- Get yourself ready before the kids
This will mean missing out on a bit of sleep but it will be much easier to help out with your kid’s morning preparations if you are ready yourself.
- Create a morning schedule
Map out a morning schedule which outlines what tasks are to be completed in the morning and what order to complete them in. For example, you might want the kids to be dressed before they have breakfast. To aid in the following of the schedule, make sure the family wakes up at the same time each morning. This will ensure tasks are being completed on time every morning.
- Enjoy a simple yet healthy breakfast
Starting the day with a good breakfast is vital for kids to maintain attention throughout the day. Work out the healthiest and easiest option for your family – this might be cereal and fruit, for example.
- The less distractions, the better.
Eliminating any distractions that stand in the way of you getting the kids out the door will be helpful. Say goodbye to early morning cartoons.
- Work together
If you have a partner, divide the morning tasks between yourselves. Someone can tackle the breakfast while the other handles dressing the kids, for instance.
Take it one step further and teach your kids how to dress themselves, make themselves breakfast, brush their teeth and how to do their hair. Many hands make light work!
- Allow more time than you need
Finally, always allow more time than you need. I know, I know… it will mean waking up earlier but you will be thanking me when the kids are at school early for a change.