While most families don’t have the type of lifestyle that is portrayed on television where the children have their own schedules including everything from play dates to piano lessons, it’s still a good idea to keep your children on a schedule.
For toddler, start simple with a night time routine to get your little one used to following a schedule and going to bed at the same time every night. You may want to begin your routine with a soothing bath after dinner, then into their pajamas, a calm relaxing story and then off to bed.
Once that schedule is somewhat easy for him/her to follow, start a morning routine. Wake them in the morning and follow their routine for getting started with their day, including getting dressed, having breakfast, playing with toys for a bit then running the day’s errands with you. Once the morning routine is in place and running smoothly, add an afternoon routine and then gradually a dinner routine.
Routines aren’t just for toddlers though, children of all ages can benefit from having some type of schedule. Elementary school aged children for example can have an after-school schedule in place so they’ll know what to expect after their school day is over. It could include a small snack, which will give you a few minutes to review any paperwork in their backpack, homework and then having a little bit of play/relaxation time while dinner is being prepared.
Middle school and even high school kids can benefit as well. Usually at this age, pre-teens and teens have a lot going on besides school. Having a schedule of homework, after school activities or sports and of course their social life can get a little hectic for a teen so you may want to supply them with their own planners to help them get and stay organized with it all. Teaching them to stay organized is a great life lesson that will benefit them tremendously once they are off to college or the working world. Not only will you be teaching them about scheduling but you will also be teaching them about setting goals and priorities, all of which will benefit them in the long run.