By Joey and Carla Link
June 30, 2021
|Summer is a kid’s delight! They look forward to the end of school with anticipation. It is not long however, before many moms are counting the days until school starts again, even if they homeschool. Why? With school comes routine.
In On Becoming Babywise (or GFI Preparation for Parenting), parents learn that their babies sleep through the night faster and are healthy and happy when they are on a routine. For whatever reason, these very same parents tend to give up the routine once their children reach the preschool years.
Let me ask you this – what do your kids do with too much free time? Do they look for creative things to do or start irritating each other? Do they follow you around telling you they are bored, wanting you to entertain them? Do they constantly want to go, go, go?
The number one way to eliminate chaos in your home is to get your household on a routine. A routine brings predictability, order, and stability to a home. As adults, you know how much better you feel and how much easier life is for you when you are in a routine, It is the same for all ages of your children.
How do you come up with a routine?When you first start working with a routine get your kids mealtimes at the same time every day and except for breakfast, your kids should sit down together and eat at the table. During the summer, all your kids no matter their age should nap or have a rest time after lunch for a minimum of one hour. I gave my non-napping kids the freedom to look at or read books during this time.Also, put your kids to bed at the same time each night.4 yrs. and younger should be in bed by 7:30 pm and from 5-9 yrs. by 8:00 pm.9:00 pm for kids ages 10 – 13 yrs.Your older teens by 9:30 pm unless they have an event planned.Staying up late should be a once a week treat, not a daily event just because it is summer and they don’t have school.Kids who get the hours of sleep they need every night will be happy kids, isn’t that what you want?Little ones grow in their sleep (that is why they often wake up screaming during their preschool years as that is when their bones are stretching out).Kids/teens who get the suggested amount of sleep every night will be healthier too. Parents, are often amazed to see how adding routine to their kids’ day eliminates the need for a lot of corrective discipline. The more routine you add to your kids’ day, the more discipline you will be able to subtract from it! A good routine enhances good organization of time and helps your to-do list too.
“For God is not a God of confusion but of peace.”1 Corinthians 15:44