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Getting kids up and ready for the day - whether it be for school, day-care, or even a sport or enrichment activity - is a sure-fire stress builder and typical cause of morning madness.
What can parents do to start each day in a positive fashion? Here are several ideas from www.about.com, an on-line neighbourhood of hundreds of helpful experts who regularly share their wealth of knowledge with more than 60 million people on issues including healthcare, parenting issues, advice on travel, cooking, technology and hobbies.
lGetting Kids Up: Morning Routine Must Become Way of Life - Parents unwittingly cause morning madness by not instilling that the routine is a family requirement and not an option. A non-negotiable routine must be established, and consequences discussed and determined.
lStagger Wake-Up Times - If you've more than one kid in the house, and especially if you have a large family, consider staggering wake-up times for greater efficiency, starting with kids who need assistance first.
lGetting Kids Up: Clothing Wars Can Be Conquered With Proper Planning - Clothing, down to clean socks, underwear and shoes, and even matching hair accessories should be laid out each night before bed.
lGetting Kids Up: Breakfast Choices Should Be Determined In Advance - One mom swears by weekly breakfast menus; another adheres to cereal and fruit. Some day-care centres offer breakfast for kids; others allow parents to bring in a morning meal. Breakfast is important. Some experts argue that it is the most important meal of the day, so your kids need a nutritious start each morning.
lOnly Do What's Really Important - Some parents unwittingly set their kids to fail with their morning routines by tackling unexpected chores and duties, which causes whines and a mad rush to end up on time. Consider creating a check-list of what absolutely must be done each morning, then forget the rest.
lGetting Kids Up: Snatch and Go Theory Really Does Work - It's just not enough to get dressed and eat. How many times have kids missed the bus because they couldn't find their homework sheet or didn't have their backpack put together? If you drive your kids, then put their organised backpacks in the car the night before.