It is not easy for kids to get back to the school routines once they have been off school for summer vacation. Trying to get a child back into a routine can be difficult and sometimes downright stressful, but having checklists for important parts of the child’s day can make the back to school routines a bit more manageable for both the child and parent.
There are numerous checklists that can be printed from the internet for free or ones that can be purchased at the store. If the right kinds of checklists cannot be found on the internet or at the store, it is very easy to make a checklist at home that can be specifically customized to the needs of the child.
Parents have asked me many times over the years what they can do to get their child back into a routine once school starts and I always suggest checklists for key areas of the day. The key areas are the times of the child’s day when accomplishing tasks are most challenging.
Morning seems to be a difficult time for most children to get going; not only are most children tired when they wake up, but they are also on a tight time frame to make it to school on time. Having a checklist with the necessary morning activities written down such as: getting clothes on, brushing teeth, brushing hair and eating breakfast is a great way for kids to be able to see what they need to do visually and then have the opportunity to check it off the list and also have the feeling of a sense of accomplishment.
After school checklist
The after school checklist is especially beneficial and helpful if the child comes home to an empty house and does not have a parent home to guide them. The after school checklist can have tasks written on it such as: eating a snack, completing homework, working on any necessary chores or any other task that needs to be completed by the child.
Bedtime can be challenging because most children do not want to go to bed; however, a checklist is a great way for kids to transition into their bedtime. Tasks such as brushing teeth, reading a book, preparing school materials for the following day or picking out clothes for the following day are excellent to put on a checklist as this will make bedtime a smoother experience.
Keeping a calendar for the month or even year is a wonderful way for the child and family to see what is coming up and what to expect on a daily, weekly or monthly basis. When a child knows what to expect and what is coming next, this tends to help them to stay in a routine and thus calendars are an excellent resource.