Breakfasts, lunches, clothes, backpacks, homework, brushed teeth, combed hair–school mornings can be hectic, especially after a summer of fun and leisure. It’s a tough job for any parent, and if your kids aren’t early birds, it’s even harder. Try these tips to speed up your morning routine and make it a little more fun in the process!
- Make a List, and Check it Twice: Are your kids the type to run out the door without a lunch, or missing a sock? Help them (and yourself) out with this fun idea. Pick up a whiteboard at your local dollar store, and use paint or a permanent marker to write each step of the morning routine on the board. Draw an empty box next to each step for each child. Leave some space toward the bottom to add special tasks for field trips or holidays. Set the board up in a central part of your home, and have the kids check off morning tasks as they complete them–you could even make a race out of it!
- Do a Fashion Show the Night Before: After dinner, have your kids show you everything they plan to wear to school the next day, from socks to shirt. Compliment the outfit, and do a quick check to make sure they aren’t missing anything. If you have younger (or just goofier) kids, you can make an actual fashion show out of it, and have them model the looks for you!
- Pre-make Lunches: It’s easier to hand your kids a healthy, balanced lunch if you’ve put part of it together in advance. The night before, portion fruit, veggies, and snack food into baggies or containers, so that you can pop it in their lunchboxes in the morning. All you’ll have to put together is a quick sandwich. You can even take the evening time to write a note to tuck in the lunchbox and brighten their day.
- Tune In: Music is a known mood changer, and playing upbeat tunes in the morning can help all of you move faster and feel more cheerful. Please everybody by working with your kids to create a morning playlist together. Take turns adding lively, invigorating songs, and then start it up in the morning when it’s time for everyone to wake up.
- Cubbies Aren’t Just for School: Head back to the dollar store to pick up some storage bins. If plastic isn’t your thing, there are lots of great options like cloth or wicker out there. Set them up by the front door, one for each child. Make sure that the night before school, each kid has their packed backpack, shoes jacket, and anything else they need in their cubby, ready to go. It’s an easy way to keep things together!