If you’re thinking about starting daily routines for kids, the answer is YES!
You are most likely here because you’re just like me. Most of your days are spent with your children and all of days are a little cray and you need help reining it back in.
Well, I come bearing great news!
By using these simple daily routines for kids (that really work, I promise) we have 1,000% changed the flow of our day!
- Do you want your kids to learn responsibility?
- Are you homeschooling or virtual learning and you need a doable structure to your day?
- Do you want to stop reminding them to do things a bajillion times a day?
- Do you need your children to learn some independence?
- Do you long for a better flow in your day that’s not rigid?
- Do you need a sense of direction in your day?
- Do you want to stop nagging your kids about what they need to be doing during each moment?
Then read on!
I felt exactly like you!!
Life before our routines consisted of not getting dressed until noon every day (if by then), struggling to get teeth brushed, no sort of real flow to our day that led to chaos.
Which usually ended with me having to count to 10 before I lost my ever loving mind! And then usually losing my ever loving mind anyways!
It was not enjoyable for anyone.
Then enters our daily routines for kids and everything changed! I mean it. I’m not even exaggerating.
There is hope!
These are super easy and realistic routines I sat down and came up with because I knew things had to change and boy howdy did they!!
The day after starting our editable routine chart my son was dressed, his bed was made, teeth brushed and dog fed before I had even gotten out of bed.
It’s like he was craving structure and I had no idea.
That’s when I knew that the customizable routine chart I had created was pure gold!
But, let me back up a bit and tell you why routines are important for kids.
Why are daily routines important for kids?
I’m going to talk in bullet points because who has time to read a novel when you’re really just needing something you can implement today so you don’t blow a gasket.
Also, I want to say that I gathered this information from my years as an elementary school teacher and from my time as an at home teacher with my own kids.
Here are some key reasons why daily routines are so important for our kids:
- Stability – Once a good routine is in place they will know what to expect and when to expect it. No surprises! This leads to a more stable and confident child.
- Structure – Structure and stability go hand in hand. Kids crave structure. They have very little control in life but knowing what to expect after breakfast (for example) is one way that structure provides the security they really want.
- Responsibility – When they know what to expect. They can meet expectations. We are teaching our kids to be successful adults. So, we need to gradually teach them responsibility. This can start at a very young age!
- Independence – Knowing what to expect allows them to be independent and get things done on their own. Without mom or dad having to remind them a bajillion times.
- And many other reasons but these are the top ones in my opinion!
How do you make a daily routine for kids?
The best way to come up with your daily routines is to stop and think about what are the most important things in your day?!
That’s exactly what I did! My list included daily routine cards for the following:
- Make Bed
- Brush Teeth
- Get Dressed
- Feed the Dog
- Pick up Toys
- Put on Shoes
- Clean Up Dishes
- Brush Hair
- Pick Out Books
- Wash Hands
- Take a Bath
- Go Potty
- Put Clothes in Hamper
- Get Backpack
- Activity Time
- Get in Car for an Outing
- Put on PJs
- Stay in Bed at Night
Once I had these routines together I wanted to add a visual to each one because my son isn’t reading yet and most kids (and adults) benefit from visual representation of what they’re learning.
And, if you’re needing ideas for what to do during “activity time” you should definitely check out these no hassle indoor activities you can do with your kids today!
How to implement daily routines for kids?
Once we had our daily routines in place I knew I was ready to implement them. I knew my kids were ready for the responsibility and we were all ready for some new found sanity!
It was very easy to implement these routines into our day.
I started by having them displayed in a main are of our home. So, they are easy to see throughout the day.
The first day we did our routines I got eye level with my son and told him:
- These are the routines you will be responsible for every day. Then I walked through all the routines I picked to put on our chart.
- I told him the first day I would help him remember what he was supposed to do and when he was supposed to do it. After that it would be his job to get his routines completed. (You know your child best. So use your own discretion. If you feel like you need to walk them through it for a week, do it. This is just what I did.)
- Then I showed him the reward chart. We went over what routines are ones he would get a smiley face for after completing it. I picked the routines to add to the reward chart that I knew he needed to work on the most.
- Then we got started! And I have to tell you he caught on very quickly and I’m sure you’re children will too!
It’s so important to let kids know the expectations you have for them. That way they know what to expect and are more likely to meet the expectations you put in place. Because they want to do well (even if they don’t show it).
What is a good routine look like?
You know you have a good routine when it fits your day. You shouldn’t have to fit your routines. You are the adult so you decide what is best for your and your kids.
With an editable routine chart that is also customizable you can make changes to it depending on what works best for your family and your days.
Here is an example schedule that I used to base our daily routines off of.
If you want some more toddler schedule ideas that are realistic and can compliment your daily routines click here!
In order for the daily routine chart for kids to fit our lives I added the following categories to our routine chart.
Parts of the Day
Children have a hard time with understanding the parts of the day. So, I thought it would be best to have a MORNING, AFTERNOON AND NIGHT routine chart.
This way kids can visually see the parts of the day and know what they are responsible for during those times of day.
This is what our routine chart looks like.
Daily Feel Good
A daily feel good is at the top of each routine chart. This is a daily affirmation for kids reminding them of the positive things that they can think about! Things like…
- I am smart!
- I am kind!
- I am special!
- It is a good day!
- I am a good listener!
Positive affirmations like these are important for kids to say to themselves. This way we get their inner dialogue going in a positive direction.
Adding sequencing (1st, 2nd, 3rd) to each routine chart was another way to customize the charts.
With this option at hand you can decide how many routines your child is responsible for 1st. It may just be 1st make your bed. Or if you feel like they are ready for two step directions (a school skill) you can tell them 1st to make their bed and then get dressed.
Working on sequencing is also an important skill for your child to work on. It’s a part of functioning as an independent individual.
Adding sequencing to their routine chart is a very natural and real like way to practice that skill.
The reward chart has been a very important piece of our success with the daily routines.
I only put the routines I know my son needs to work on, on the reward chart.
Then when he accomplishes that routine he kids a smily face on his reward chart.
At the end of the week if he has all his smily faces he gets some sort of treat! One week it was a toy. Another week is was a kid’s Sprite from Sonic. The point is you decide what a good reward is for your child.
You also decide what success means for your child. It may not be a full week. It may just be a day or one specific routine.
Figure out what your child can handle and do that. A week might be too long for some kids or it might be too short. Again, you decide what works best for your kids.
Here is a quick video explaining the daily routine chart in a little more depth!
Like I have said these routines have helped our whole family in a very real way!
- Now my son knows when to do certain routines throughout the day.
- He’s excited to get his routines done because he likes the feeling he gets.
- I don’t feel like I need to remind him over and over and over!
- It gives us a natural flow to our day that we were missing.
- When something is off in our day. We simply revisit our routines and make the modifications that we need.
- There’s a definite start and end to our day.
- And did I mention my new found freedom because I’m not nagging all the time!!
If you want to test it out without getting the customizable and editable daily routines. Here is a sample daily routine chart you can check out for FREE!
It’s not editable or customizable but you will get a feel for how daily routines could be the magic your household is missing!
No matter what you decide to do to get peace a freedome back in your day. I hope it is a huge success and that you know that you are an amazing mom! Raising amazing kids!