It's 7:45AM and your blood pressure spikes. The mountain of mommy and daddy to-do's begins to sink in and you realize, it's time for school.
How many of us can understand the dreaded Monday-Friday mornings that demand we as parents be on our A game. Pack the lunches, do the hair, make sure their backpack is packed, all while not forgetting to bring along your very much needed coffee for the anxious ride to school where you will drop of your child in a panicked frenzy? Doesn't sound like you? Lucky! Although it may not be as hectic for all parents first thing in the mooring, I think we can all agree that we sometimes wished our kiddos could do a little more to ease the tension and responsibly on ourselves.
Growing up in a single parent home, independence wasn't a maybe, it was NECESSARY. At the time I did't quite understand why I wasn't able to just sit their and daze at the wall, giving myself some time to wake up my 5 year old brain while my mom picked an outfit (Yes, true story). Looking back, my mother's hollers to "get up and get dressed" now make me smile. I never knew what a big difference it made in her morning when I actually took the responsibility to pick an outfit (sometimes not so cute) and make sure my bag is packed and ready. It may seem like a lot of responsibility for a youngster to handle but I don't think we give our kiddos much credit. Kids are SMART and very intuitive. Let's nurture that!
Below are some tips on how to kick start your child's independence and alleviate some pressure on your shoulders.
Give your child one task at a time, so you don't overwhelm them.
To keep a schedule and have it stick, set time limits for each task. This way your child is able to understand the importance of time management and completing goals.
Perfection is unachievable. Focus on the task and it's completion. This will give your child a sense of accomplishment and encourage further responsiblity.
Talk About It
Explain to your child the importance of independence and time management. It doesn't have to be a complicated speech and remember to speak in terms your child will understand and embrace. Everyone loves being confident in what they do!
Make A List
Sit down together and make a list of things your child would like to start learning to do on their own. Keep it an open conversation and allow the to explore their interests.