Here are 5 tips to help kids get ready for school in the morning, to get everything ready and everyone out the door without being late or losing your mind.
Do you feel like your weekday mornings, when the kids have to get off to school, are way too crazy and hectic?
If so, first know, you're not alone. This is a common feeling, but also know, there's hope!
Adopting a few new habits and streamlining a few things to be more organized, which are listed below, will help both you and your kids happily and easily get out the door and headed to school each day, without feeling like you're having to rush too much or forgetting something.
One of the biggest ways to get kids ready and out the door faster is to make bathroom time shorter in the morning.
By bathing at night your kids will have to spend less time in the bathroom in the morning, and thus will have more time for sleep and breakfast.
If you have multiple children you can split it into a routine where some shower in the morning and some at night, so there's no bottleneck that slows everyone down as they wait to use the bathroom.
You may also implement a timer for the bathroom if you have some that tend to take longer doing hair or makeup than is necessary.
Finally, adding a mirror to their bedroom can make it easier to let the teens spend more time on hair and makeup while the younger kids are in using the bathroom, brushing teeth and changing into school clothes for the day.
(You can get more tips for organizing the bathroom here, since the more organized the space the easier it is to get ready in it.)
Picking out the kids clothes once a week, for the entire week, is much easier to do than the daily scramble to pick out an outfit they want to wear.
On the weekend have your kids pick out everything they will need each day, such as pants, top, underwear, socks, shoes and accessories, and you can keep them organized and separate in a hanging closet organizer.
This is simple if they wear uniforms, but even more necessary if they do not.
Having things picked out and pulled together for grab and go in the morning will save everyone the hassle of waiting while a child tries on a dozen outfits or digs around for the belt that has gone missing.
As an alternative, you can also get in the habit of choosing the next day's outfit the night before, instead of doing a whole week's worth at once.
To learn more about this strategy, and how real families implement it in their homes, and its benefits for getting ready each morning, check out this article about laying out your clothes ahead of time here.
Instead of preparing everything the kids need to take for lunch each morning, when you're scrambling, spend time once a week prepping things for easy grab and go lunches.
Wash and prep vegetables and fruit into single serve containers or bags, and add them to your refrigerator, in the lunch packing station. Similarly, divide crackers, pretzels or similar snacks into individual servings and add to your pantry lunch packing station.
Then, each morning (or even better, the night before!) allow kids to pick something from each section of the lunch packing station to build their own lunch, and pack it into their lunch box or bag.
You can get more information and instructions on how to make a lunch packing station in your fridge and pantry here, plus the article has several reader photos showing these lunch packing stations in action in real homes.
Eating breakfast each morning is a necessity to make sure young minds are ready to learn once they get to school. But trying to get a big breakfast together in the morning makes it much more stressful.
Therefore, you may find it easier to prep for breakfast the next morning the night before, as part of your evening routine.
Some ideas include prep ahead easy freezer breakfast sandwiches or burritos that can be reheated and eaten on the go. Another is to prepare things like yogurt and granola cups, or even portion cereal for fast breakfasts on the go, or that can be eaten quickly at the kitchen table without a lot of parental assistance.
Plan ahead so you aren't scrambling in the morning over the stove trying to cook a full meal for your kids.
Finally, it will be easier to get ready for school in the morning, for both you and your kids, if you eliminate one of the biggest distractions and time wasters -- having the television on while the kids get ready for school or eat breakfast.
Instead, keep the television off in the mornings so your kids aren't losing focus while they should be getting backpacks and lunch boxes into the car, eating too slowly during breakfast, or need to be heading out to the bus stop.
These tips for getting kids ready for school in the morning are perfect for a busy family. Not only will everyone get a bit more sleep, but there will be less rushing, or forgetting things as you head out the door.
You can get more ideas for making a morning routine here, including a free printable morning routine chart you can fill out for yourself, or for your kids.
In addition, get lots more back to school ideas here to help you keep your home and your kids organized this school year!
I would love to hear from you, sharing your thoughts, questions, or ideas about this topic, so leave me a comment below. I try to always respond back!