Getting off to School on the Right Foot

Mornings can be a stressful time for families. As your family prepares for some new routines this school year, here’s a tip to help you get off on the right foot. One of the goals parents have for their children is to teach them to be independent and internally motivated. One single mom told how she addressed this for her children, ages 9, 10, and 11.

“I didn't like what I was seeing in myself. I heard myself nagging and prodding them along, yelling, ‘You're going to be late. You better hurry and brush your hair. Get your shoes on…’ So she gathered the children together one evening to introduce a new plan.

“You three are getting older. Tomorrow begins a new system where you're going to manage yourselves. I've been doing a lot of yelling in the morning and I don't want to do that anymore. So I have a plan. I'm not going to wake you up in the morning. Here is a new alarm clock for each of you. You can decide what time you want to get up and it will wake you.

“I want you to learn to be independent so we're going to have check points each morning. At 7:15 am you need to be down for breakfast, all dressed with shoes on, and your bed made. By 7:50 am you need to have completed your chores and have combed your hair. Those are the checkpoints. This means you have to learn to look at the clock yourself and not wait for me to tell you what time it is.

“To help you be motivated to meet these check points, I have something positive and something negative. Let's start with the positive. First, if you meet your two check points each morning for five mornings then I will allow you to watch a video on the weekend. However, if you miss one check point on a morning you will have to go to bed a half hour earlier that evening, since you must need more sleep in order to get up and get yourself ready.”

They ended the meeting positively as they talked about the benefits of independence and being self-motivated. Mom taught the kids how to set their alarms and they felt empowered and eager to manage themselves the next morning.

The following day Mom was in bed and heard alarms going off and feet shuffling. She wasn't quite ready to get up and began having second thoughts about her great plan. In the end though, it worked. Her children were successful at demonstration independence in the morning by getting ready and Mom didn't have to nag or be harsh. She replaced yelling and nagging with firmness and a clear plan for developing independence in her kids, all in a positive atmosphere of cooperation.

For more practical ideas on parenting with honor, consider the book, Say Goodbye to Whining, Complaining, and Bad Attitudes in You and Your Kids by Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller, RN, BSN. For more ideas on developing independence and self-motivation in kids consider the CD series, Everyday Parents CAN Raise Extraordinary Kids by Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller, RN, BSN.

What are some things you do to get your kids ready for the school-time routines?

Milan Tomic

Hi. I’m Designer of Blog Magic. I’m CEO/Founder of ThemeXpose. I’m Creative Art Director, Web Designer, UI/UX Designer, Interaction Designer, Industrial Designer, Web Developer, Business Enthusiast, StartUp Enthusiast, Speaker, Writer and Photographer. Inspired to make things looks better.

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