June 3, 2009 by Marci
One of my goals for this summer is to get the kids into a new summer routine. During the school year, the kids have morning routines, afterschool routines and bedtime routines. Now, it is summer vacation and things are a bit more relaxed and less scheduled, but I still want to give the kids some sort of routine. Why? In our experience, our kids need routine to fight boredom, to teach them responsibility, to give them a sense of accomplishment and to help our household run smoothly.
In the past, my 8 year old daughter’s routine list was on the bulletin board in her room. If I noticed she had forgotten a step in her routine, I didn’t have to get on her about it. I just said “Did you do everything on your list?” She would check and self-correct. That was much better than a confrontation. My 4 year old loves structure, so his routine is ingrained in his little head. He has actually added stuff to his routines over the past few months as he figures out he can do new things.
Here is what our 8 year old’s morning routine looked like during the school year:
- Make your bed
- Brush your hair
- Brush your teeth
- Put pjs in the hamper
- Pack your school bag
- Unload silverware from dishwasher
Here’s her bedtime routine during the school year:
- Brush your teeth
- Put clothes in the hamper
- Read for 15-30 minutes
- Pick up bedroom floor
Pretty simple stuff, but it makes such a difference to have it posted and expected to be completed. This summer, we are adding more chores to our routine lists. The kids always had chores, but they were kind of on a “as needed” basis. We want something more concrete this summer. I’ve been reading some great blog posts about kids chores from The Creative Mama and Laura at I’m an Organizing Junkie. I have also been looking at some great online tools for kids chores. My husband and I are going to set down tonight and outline the new routines and chores and how we are going to implement them. The kids come back from the grandparents tomorrow. I want to have this in place this week, for the most part. I’ll post what we come up with later this week.
What routines and chores are your kids responsible for? How do you reward them? How do you enforce that they are getting done? Any and all help welcome and encouraged!!!!