Sunday, 25 January 2015

An Organised Morning Routine and Useful Weekly Calendar ...

Does anyone else have a little monster (or princess) heading off to school. As the date draws closer I feel myself getting more and more anxious.

I know, I'm meant to be the calm one, and it's the kids who are anxious, but this is my first time and every night I feel the fears start to settle in as I am laying in bed.

This sort of vicious circle of thinking keeps me up till all hours of the morning. Are they ready for school? Of course they are, everyone goes to school at five and they all cope just fine ... Am I ready for them to be at school? Have I made enough different snacks in the freezer? Of course you have, and you can always make more ... How will they cope without me there to guide them? What if they forget were their classroom is when the lunch bells sounds? Calm down, I'm sure their teacher will explain it all to them and the staff probably keep an extra eye on all those new little ones ... Will they remember to wait for me at the class? I hope he doesn't decide to walk home without me. I'll have to make sure that I'm at the class room at least 15 minutes early ...

Well as you can tell I haven't been sleeping much, and that's not including the two month old baby who wakes me several times a night to be fed.

One of my foremost concerns is making sure that he will be arriving to school on time. Which has as much to do with me as it does with him. Some morning in our house seem to go forever, while others flash by, especially if you need to be out of the house by 8.30am.

So to help us to get out of the door I have made up a morning routine chart to display on the wall, so that Harry can see exactly what needs to be done, in what order, and can take a bit of responsibility for making sure that he is ready.

We also use our kids calendars to ensure that everyone know what is happening and when. This idea came out of my son and his million questions a day.
"What day is it today?"
"What are we doing today?"
"When do we go and see Nanny?"
"What does the weekend mean?"
"How long until we go to Grandma's house?"

So we came up with a weekly calendar that both Harry and Lillie would be able to read and understand. I designed and laminated the background with the seven days on it and then small cards with both a picture and the word of activities we might do in a week. These included the obvious - Kindy, Child Care, School - as well as the more specific - Doctor's Visits, Dentist, Hair Cuts, Dance Lessons, Football, Shopping, Playground, Excursions, Swimming Lessons, Parties, Library Days, and then of course visiting Nanny and Grandad and Grandma.

Now I made the cards using the Silhouette Studio software that came with my Cameo machine (I absolutely love this software it is amazing!)  I printed off enough of each card as I thought we would need in a week - so school is five days a week so I printed of five school cards. You can see though that sometimes for very special events that we don't have a card for we use a whiteboard marker to draw it on.

Here Harry drew a picture of a baby because that was the day I was going into hospital to have Archie. As well as a Christmas Tree because that was the day of his Kindy Christmas Party...

I also have a little boy and a little girl with 'Today' written on them that we move along each day.
Now each Sunday Harry will help me to choose the correct cards to add to the next week. It is great for him to be able to see what is happening and what to expect. I think that it gives him a sense of control in his surroundings. It also means when all those questions come out I can just tell him to go and check the calendar and that is that.

 What do you do to help your kids to know what is going on each week?