Dealing with Resistance to School Morning Routine
Children may resist morning routines by arguing about breakfast food, debating about what clothes to wear, or playing when they should be getting ready to leave. Children often seek our attention in the morning, especially when we are rushing.
Our children soon learn that when they resist, argue, or stall, they get our attention. These morning difficulties may arise even when we give our children plenty of attention at other times. What can you do to spur on the uncooperative child and give him a sense of power and control?
- Encourage and remind, but try not to nag. Let them experience the consequences of procrastinating. This may mean missing breakfast or forgetting their homework.
- Establish an agreement that the TV doesn’t go on in the morning until the chores are done, if at all.
- Create a morning routine chart with your child, and involve your child by asking, “What’s next on the routine chart?” They can help cut out pictures and design the chart. Have stickers for your child to place on the steps she completes.
- Use an alarm clock in children’s rooms. This will ensure that you wake them up at the same time each morning and you haven’t gotten lost looking over your emails. This will help prepare toddlers for elementary school as well.
- Ask children whether they would like your help getting ready for school.
- Avoid lectures. Instead, asking “what” and “how” questions – such as “what happens when you don’t get dressed in the morning?” and “How do you feel about missing the assembly?” – will entice conversation with our children. These questions help children think for themselves, whereas our lectures may make them stop listening.
- Talk about times when you have procrastinated, what happened as a result, and how you felt about it. These conversations can be used as teachable moments for your kids.
- Plan ahead, and give your child enough time to succeed on his own. Remember to give reminders and establish clear expectations regarding his morning routine.
- Let your child know that you need her help and say, “I would appreciate you getting dressed so we can get to school in good time.” This invites cooperation instead of defiance.
Many of us charge off with our to-do lists in hand, thinking that when everything is done (which it never is) we can enjoy life. But what we do every day is life. Our ability to step in time with our children amid the everyday stuff, such as getting out of the house in the morning, takes some organization and a lot of patience. Using these tips for establishing a morning routine for school can help you get it done.
P.S: Don’t forget to keep the children warm this Harmattan season. You can check out our previous post on how to keep the family safe during Harmattan.
Have a fruitful week