Getting out the door with­out a melt­down

Manawatu Guardian - - NEWS -

For many fam­i­lies the morn­ing rush hour is the most stress­ful part of the day. So how can you and the kids get out the door on time?

The key is or­gan­i­sa­tion.

Get your­self ready first, be­fore your child. To avoid last minute rush­ing pre­pare some things the night be­fore and go to bed at a rea­son­able hour so you’ll wake early enough.

I also rec­om­mend against hav­ing the tele­vi­sion on in the morn­ing. Bet­ter to make sure the chil­dren are dressed be­fore break­fast. Per­haps when they are fully ready you can turn the tele­vi­sion on then.

Let your child know ahead of time that you’ll be go­ing out and ex­plain ex­actly what the day’s ac­tiv­i­ties will be and their time re­quire­ments.

Younger chil­dren can learn the im­por­tance of or­gan­i­sa­tion by do­ing things for them­selves. Teach­ing chil­dren to get dressed by them­selves is a chance to prac­tice in­de­pen­dent skills and it also saves you time.

You may like to try the “beat the clock” game. Your child’s goal is to be ready be­fore the alarm clock sounds off. If your child wins, he earns a small treat or re­ward, such as a favourite snack in his lunch box.

Tell your child ex­actly what tasks he must do to be ready to leave and win the re­ward. Make sure you set the timer for a rea­son­able amount of time and avoid giv­ing re­peated in­struc­tions or nag­ging your child to hurry up.

Of­ten it will only take a two-week pe­riod of beat­ing the clock be­fore the re­wards and the clock are phased out. Re­mem­ber to al­ways praise your child’s achieve­ments in learn­ing bet­ter or­gan­i­sa­tion.

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