Tips for keeping your kids on time
For kids, most of the way their time is spent is predetermined. From the beginning to end of their day, parents are typically the most important facilitators of time management for their young child. Parents will help wake them up on time, get them to the bus stop, remind them to finish all of their homework, put them to bed, and then the cycle continues the following day. The ability to manage our time is not a skill we are born with, but it is something that is instilled within us as we grow up. Keeping your kids on time by creating a routine, having them talk out their plans, and teaching them how to tell time and use a calendar are three steps parents may take over time to illustrate the importance of time management as they grow up.
Form a routine
A primary step you may take to help with keeping your kids on time is to create a daily routine in your household. Beginning when your kids are quite young, routine is key to establishing a sense of security in the home and in the customary practices of each day. Even the youngest kids who cannot yet communicate with words are mistrusting of the unknown and desire some predictability. Your toddler is likely to quickly pick up on what time you always pick them up from daycare and when they are going to bed each night. This schedule will become second nature to your child, and they will begin to enjoy the prospect of their routine. Also, as your child becomes used to the way their day flows, they may begin wanting to manage their time and daily routine more independently.
Talk it out
Keeping your kids on time in their routine is a great responsibility, but it does become easier for parents to as the children get older. In their youngest years, your child is likely to start picking up on the meaning of words such as “now” and “soon” when they hear you talking about events like breakfast or bedtime. Once their vocabulary grows and they may form simple sentences on their own, talk through the routine with your child. For example, when they wake in the morning, have them say “breakfast time” and after breakfast, make up an easy, little song to sing together about going to day care. Even these small verbal cues will help to further develop a sense of time and responsibility when managing daily events. As a parent, this may also help to make things easier for you in terms of keeping up with your child’s routine as well. This will become even easier for parents once your child is old enough to learn how to use a watch and calendar.
Create a calendar
Once your kids have grown a bit more, teaching them how to use a clock and a calendar are important ways to help keep your kids on time, yet these are also great ways to teach kids how to be accountable for their own schedule. Kids may start learning to tell time on a simple level soon after they are able to count to 60 and do some basic math. Once they have grasped the concept of using large hand and digital clocks, a watch could make a great birthday gift. Along with telling time on a watch, a monthly calendar is an easy way to help teach your child to plan ahead as a way to stay on time. As a fun project, you and your child can decorate their monthly calendar with colorful stickers to indicate special birthdays or events for your family. If they hang this calendar by the door of their bedroom, they can easily glance at it before heading out.
All these things parents do to keep their kids on time helps to teach them the importance of managing time efficiently so that as they grow into teenagers, they have a better sense of how handle their own time in a constructive way and take on more responsibility.
The right co-parenting tools will help you to keep your kids on time.
If your family is using the OurFamilyWizard Calendar to keep track of everyone’s schedule, you can invite your child to use the online calendar with you. The OurFamilyWizard Calendar is a great place to condense your family’s busy schedule into one neutral location that the whole family can use. When your child logs into their account, they can view the custody or parenting time schedule, events and holidays that have been posted to your calendar. They will also be able to send messages to both parents through the OurFamilyWizard Message Board if they have any questions or comments about their schedule.