One of the biggest complaints I hear from other moms is that it’s so hard to get their kids out the door for school in the morning. Back in the day, this used to be the case for us as well. We would start the mornings with our kiddos arguing over not wanting to wear what we had picked out for them, and then eventually ended up with someone not being able to find their shoes. Sprinkle in forgotten homework and having to pack lunches last minute because I had spent my entire morning searching for shoes and arguing with my kids, and you have a recipe for disaster. The absolute worst thing that you can do is start your day off on the wrong foot in my opinion. It sets the tone for a bad day all around. Not to mention, you end up spending the day with frustration and mom guilt. A few years back, we made a pact to start our days in a calm, organized manner by doing just a few things the night before, and it has made a world of difference for myself, my husband and the kids too!The first thing we did was set a specific time for homework. This is the time that they sit down and tackle whatever needs to be done for the following day or we portion it out if they get a project or weekly packet. Once homework is finished, we check over it together to make sure it's finished properly and that nothing was left behind.
Once all homework is done, we move on to packing school bags and hanging them by the front door. We take this time to make sure that any information or permission slips that may need to be signed or read are taken care of. The kids then pack their homework in their bags and they are ready to roll the next morning without having to gather anything. We have a shelf with hooks that hangs by our front door. There is a hook for each family member to hang one bag and a coat or jacket on. This way everybody knows where their things are at all times.
Each of our kids has a bench at the end of their bed. This is the place where they put their clothes and any accessories they will be wearing the next day. Since we do this the night before, we usually check the weather so we can plan accordingly. Any discussions about what they should wear are handled the evening before so there is no arguing in the morning. To be honest, since we started doing this at night, there hasn't been much conflict about what they wear at all. I attribute that to the fact that they aren't trying to wake up and aren’t on system overload like they are in the mornings.
The last thing we do before bedtime is to pack lunches. I love lunch containers that are divided so foods don't get mixed together and smushed. We let the kids pack their lunches now...more about that in a couple of weeks, and it is awesome! We have a couple of guidelines that we give them, like they have to have a fruit, protein and of course, their Niagara water, but they don't seem to mind this at all! This keeps everybody happy because they can pick what they'd like for lunch and know exactly what to look forward to the next day! We do make an exception when they are packing something that needs to be warmed and put in a thermos though.
Implementing these tips and sticking to them will hopefully help you and your kiddos get off to a better start each morning! Got any tips that you would like to share? Leave them HERE on Niagara’s Facebook page, and you might win $100!