The alarm goes off and the school morning routine chaos unfolds!
Sound familiar? Well, you are not alone.
Most parents experience the same frustration every morning as they try to get everyone up and running and out the door on time for school (and work).
In addition, let’s face it… Not all of us are morning people.
However, our kids depend on us each and every morning to wake them up, get them ready, and send them off to school.
If we manage to do that successfully, we can help them start their day (and ours) on a positive note.
So, how can we make one of the most stressful parenting routines work in our favor?
Let’s take a look…
7 SCHOOL MORNING ROUTINE HACKS
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1. Prepare the day before
A stress-free school morning routine starts with a good foundation and preparation.
It is likely that you will even get a better night sleep yourself if you know that when you wake up you won’t have to scramble to get things done last minute.
Here are a few things you can do to ensure you save precious time in your school morning routine:
- Lay out uniforms/school clothes, shoes, and socks in a designated area for each child
- Prepare lunches ahead of time (pack fruit salads, vegetables, cold sandwiches, etc.)
- Lay out your work clothes and other supplies (purse, keys, etc.)
2. Get up before Kids
This step is fundamental in starting a stress-free school morning routine. Waking up earlier than the kids allows you set time aside for yourself.
When you dedicate time for yourself first thing in the morning, tackling what’s to come can feel less daunting.
Here are a few ideas of the things you can do in the early morning to reset your mind and start on a positive note:
- Eat a healthy high protein breakfast
- Turn on the radio (I love smooth Jazz and Christian Worship)
- Get an early workout (15-minute Yoga videos are great)
- Read a chapter of a new book while eating breakfast
- Start reading a daily devotional
- Read a chapter of the Bible
Waking up extra early to do any of these things might sound more of a sacrifice that anything else.
But trust me, once you get going you will realize the incredible difference that it has on the rest of your day if you’re consistent.
3. Help them Start the Morning Right
Just like you need to set the mood for your day to start on a good note, helping your kids do the same it is also as important.
Usually, how they start off their morning will typically dictate how their day will progress as well.
So, implement things on your school morning routine that helps you kids start a stress-free, calm, and positive day alongside you by:
- Waking them up with kiss, a snuggle, and a gentle voice
- If you have older kids that are not into the kissing stuff (e.g. teenagers!), help them program their alarm clock to their favorite song
- Encourage them to listen to music as they eat breakfast instead of watching TV or playing with their iPad
- Read an inspirational quote together and discuss it
Thinking positive, happy, hopeful, optimistic, joyful thoughts decreases cortisol and produces serotonin, which creates a sense of well-being (source).
- What is Mindful Parenting and 9 Great Ways to Apply it Daily
- The Importance of Present Parenting and 9 Ways to be a More Present Parent Today
4. Time Stagger
This is especially important if you have limited bathroom space and more than one child.
By waking up your kids in 5-10 minutes intervals you can ensure that their school morning schedules stagger.
In turn, preventing the famous, “MOMMMM, she’s still in the bathroom” dilemma.
Wake up your “least morning loving” child earlier so that they have a bit more time to get ready. Then, wake up every other child 5-10 minutes thereafter.
5. Create a morning school routine chart
Using the time staggering method above, creating a school morning routine chart is a great idea.
It gives children a sense of order, control, and expectancy which combats anxiety and frustration.
Designate time slots for morning tasks such as bathroom time, breakfast, and getting dressed and ready.
The morning school routine chart is most beneficial for parents with multiple children.
For younger kids use stickers and images to describe a certain task, such as brushing their teeth, eating breakfast, etc.
Once they have a mental note of those times by doing them often, it will become second nature.
You can even implement a weekly/monthly reward system for those who followed their charts successfully.
Oh and, if you need help creating all kinds of children routines I recommend you take a look at this course.
Family Routines: How to Automate Your Housewife Life will teach you:
- Lunch Routines
- Kids helping with meals
- Morning routines
- After school routines
- Cleaning and house chores routines
- Homework routines
- and…clothing routines
You can check out the full curriculum here.
I mean honestly, when you are done with this easy to follow and implement course you will be a new mom.
Sometimes all we need is a fresh set of ideas we can implement to what we already do daily, but in a more efficient manner.
Maybe you will be able to kick up your feet up at the end of the night and watch Netflix after all.
6. Assign spaces
Nothings drives me crazier than a six o’clock in the morning, “Mommm, where is my bookbag!!!” Been there, done that, fixed the problem.
Find a corner in your home (close to the door or in your kid’s room where you can create assigned spaces for their school related items.
Create a name label and mount it on the wall. Place a hook on the wall for their book bag and multi-functional shoe cubby bench for easy storage underneath.
Or you can go for a one piece furniture like this one:
You will never have to hear, “mom, where is my bookbag again!”.
Okay, almost never.
7. Morning tasks first, then TV
It isn’t a secret that most kids (including mine) like to wake up and go straight to the television to watch cartoons or use their electronic devices as they eat breakfast.
Television or any other type of electronics tends to delay the school morning routine process by distracting them from their morning task.
To solve that problem, ensure they first use the restroom, wash their faces, brush their teeth and make their bed before they do anything else.
School morning routines can feel daunting and chaotic.
That is true weather you have one child or ten.
Some morning may also seem more challenging that others, and that is okay.
But, sticking to the tips we just covered will enable you to start your school morning routine less stressed and overwhelmed.
In turn, helping your children also start their day on a more positive and happier note.
See you in the morning mama…. Before the kids get up of course.
What works for you in your school morning routine?