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Back to School: Tutorial for parents

Back to School: Tutorial for parents

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Author: Amanda Gann
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Do you dread getting your kids and yourself ready in the morning? If you are like many parents then your house is like a zoo that let all the animals free, every morning. Your kids are still getting dressed or in the bathroom when they're supposed to be eating breakfast, for sure you need to read research papers for parents. You're trying to do your hair and make lunches at the same. The little ones are running around, under your feet, still in their jammies.

It doesn't have to be this way. There are a few simple things you can do to keep chaos out of your life. First you have to start by creating a routine that works. Routine is a great way to get rid of chaos. You say you already have a routine? Well if you do have a routine and your life is still in chaos then your routine is not working for you. You need to create a new routine. One for each family member. One that works.

First of all, your routine does not start when the alarm clock goes off in the morning. By the time you get up in the morning your routine should be just about at it's end. Your new routine is going to start when you get home in the afternoon. Or, if you are a stay at home parent, when your kids get home from school in the afternoon.

Secondly, each member of your family should have their own routine. Each routine must work together with every other routine. For example, you can't have all your kids in the bathroom at the same time so you have to plan separate times for each. Use a timer if you have too. Tell everyone that they have 15 minutes in the bathroom. When they go in they are to set the timer for 15 minutes. When the timer goes off they have to get out. While one is in the bathroom the other two can be doing something else like getting dressed or eating breakfast.

Why do they all need their own routines? Because you can't do it all. Everyone has to learn that they are responsible for themselves. They need to do their own things so you will have time to do your things. If everyone works together as a team then everything will get done and no one will be stressed. Stressing is no way to start your day.

You should try to get up first. That way you can get in the bathroom and get dressed first. Do what you need to do. That way when everyone else is up you don't have to try to get yourself ready at the same time you are getting everyone else ready.

If you have pre-schoolers you can let them sleep in until everyone else is gone or get them dressed and sitting at the table with their breakfast before you wake up the school age children. That way you are dealing with a smaller amount of children at one time.

If you have teens or pre-teens you should make them responsible for doing most of their routine all by themselves. Give them each their own timer if you need to. Tell them they have 15 minutes to get dressed, 15 minutes in the bathroom, 15 minutes to eat, etc. They are old enough to get themselves ready and they need to learn how to take care of themselves so when they go out in the real world they can get to work or college classes on time. The earlier you start making them do their routines themselves the more it will be ingrained into their lives when they grow up.

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