Tips for a Stress-free School Morning Routine

3 children in school uniform smiling

Mornings can often feel like a chaotic rush, especially when getting the kids ready for school. With so many little things to remember for everyone’s separate schedules, there is much to organise. But with a few simple tweaks to your routine, you can transform those stressful routines into peaceful and productive starts to the day. 

Luckily, there are some small but handy things you can do to make your mornings run just that little bit smoother, setting the tone for a positive day ahead at our private school in Devon.

1. Prepare the Evening Before

This is the best tip to make your mornings feel much smoother. Nothing is worse than lying in bed and dreading the next day because you feel chaotic and unprepared.

Preparing as much as you can the evening before will relieve some of that morning stress when rushing to get ready in the morning. So, what can you prepare?

  • School uniform: laying your child/children’s school uniform ready for the next day.
  • School bags: locating bags and ensuring all homework has been put in them can help ensure the children don’t have to scramble any last-minute bits together before school. 
  • Keys: make sure your car and house keys are where they need to be and placing coats and shoes by the door ready to go can also help.
  • Breakfast and lunch: lay out bowls, cutlery, and cups and ensure that you have enough breakfast! Making school lunches the night before (if your child doesn’t have cooked lunches made by the school) will save a lot of time and stress in the morning, too. 
A schoolgirl eating lunch

2. Sort Yourself Out First

Before you begin thinking about others in the morning, it is essential that you feel prepared. In theory, getting ready together on the go makes the most sense. However, waking up that bit earlier to get ready for the day allows you to complete essential tasks distraction-free.

Ensuring you have taken some time out for yourself and cleared your head for the day is integral to motivating the others in the household.

3. Establish a Consistent Wake-up Time

Maintain a consistent wake-up time for both you and your children to regulate your body clocks. Avoid hitting the snooze button, as it can disrupt your sleep cycle and leave you feeling groggy. Waking up at the same time every day sets a rhythm that makes mornings feel more manageable. 

How To Help Children Set Goals

4. Create a Morning Checklist

Creating a visual chart or morning checklist is especially helpful for younger children, as they can see their progress throughout the morning and also over the week.

A simple chart with the morning routine steps and the weekdays is enough. A chalkboard, whiteboard, or pinboard are all suitable for this purpose, and you can be as creative as you want. You may want to include the simplest of tasks, such as:

  • Making the bed
  • Cleaning teeth
  • Washing face
  • Brushing hair
  • Having breakfast
  • Putting clothes on
  • Toilet check
  • Coats and shoes
  • Collecting lunchbox

Seeing what needs to be achieved will help keep everyone on track throughout the morning and can also be used to note additional things to remember that day.

5. Encourage Independence 

Foster independence in your children by assigning age-appropriate tasks they can handle independently. Whether it’s making their bed or getting dressed, empowering them to take ownership of certain responsibilities alleviates your workload and instils a sense of confidence in them.

How Can I Teach My Child To Be More Independent

6. Limit Screen Time

Minimise distractions by enforcing no screens during the morning routine and before bed to ensure a good night’s sleep. Devices like phones, tablets, and TVs can easily derail your schedule and disrupt the morning flow. Instead, encourage activities that promote focus and engagement, like reading or listening to music. 

7. Remain Calm

During the morning hustle, it’s easy to let stress levels rise, but staying calm is crucial for maintaining a harmonious atmosphere. When things inevitably don’t go as planned – whether it’s spilt cereal or misplaced homework – take a deep breath and respond with patience and composure. Your children take cues from your demeanour, so modelling a calm and collected attitude teaches them valuable lessons in resilience and adaptability. Remember, a peaceful morning sets a positive tone for the rest of the day, so try to maintain your own sense of calm amidst the chaos. 

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