Connie Schnoes, Ph.D.
Getting out of the house on time with children dressed, teeth brushed, tummies filled and backpacks in hand can be challenging. Getting out the door without nagging, yelling and racing may seem impossible. You can create an environment that teaches your child to take responsibility for his/her morning routine, and, have more pleasant interactions with your child each morning.
Getting through the morning routine can become relatively stress free if you follow some simple steps on a daily basis. I didn’t say it would be easy. Old patterns are hard to break. But with time, effort and patience, smoother, happier mornings are possible.
Planning and patience are key to allow this strategy to work. This plan is about teaching your child to take care of his/her morning routine as independently as possible. Your child is responsible for doing his/her morning tasks. If you take responsibility by reminding, doing for, helping (when help isn’t required) your child will likely let you keep reminding, doing and helping him/her.
If you give this strategy a try and it doesn’t seem to be working, make sure enough time is allowed for everything to be done, praise is readily being given and access to the fun activity is available after everything else is done. And remember, change takes time.