Controlling Your Family’s Morning Chaos

Sometimes, just getting one child up and ready for school can be a challenge, to say nothing of families with several children. Family mornings can be chaotic, and trying to get everyone dressed, cleaned, fed and out the door is a strenuous process even in the most subdued of families.

If you can get control of your family’s morning routine, mornings can be a positive thing for your family. Here are a few ways you can get started:

  • Set the example. If you’re harried and grouchy in the mornings, don’t be surprised if your kids are as well. Do your best to be calm and positive, even as you battle morning chaos. If you’re frazzled, chances are pretty good that your kids will be, as well.
  • Give your children the information they need. You might think that by the age of eight or nine a child should have a good handle on what’s involved in getting up and getting ready for school. After all, you’ve told the child time and time again what needs to be done. However, most young children aren’t auditory learners, and they’re going to struggle with retention. Instead, consider making a list of tasks that your children need to complete. For young children who are still learning to read, consider using pictures instead of words. For an added level of compliance, you can put check boxes on the list and let your child check off each item as it’s complete.
  • Avoid head to head confrontations. As yourself how to make the situation a win for both of you. Listen to your children, help them to identify where problems with the morning routine might lie and help them with solutions. Build the morning relationship on dialogue and trust rather than nagging and fear.
  • Plan ahead. Do what you can the night before. Having your children lay out their clothes and pack their bag for school will help them feel more in control. You should plan out breakfast so you’re not running around at the last minute, either.

Mornings don’t’ have to be a struggle. Learn to work with your children and empower them, rather than simply giving orders.

So, what kinds of things do you do to cope with hectic family morings?

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