Tips on Creating Schedules that Help Children Thrive

In life, seasons are rarely the same. Transitioning from summer fun days to heading back to school, can present some challenges for kids. You want your kid to thrive no matter what life throws at them. One way to accomplish this is through a family schedule. 

Schedules offer several benefits for children that help them be successful. Through scheduling you enable your child to feel confident, safe, engaged, and ready to participate. When you create a family schedule, you are setting up your entire family to experience these benefits. Here are six tips to create an awesome schedule that’ll help your kids thrive. 

  • Tip 1: Think about what you want
    • What problems are you trying to solve? Maybe you are trying to eliminate stress, behavior problems, disorganization, or something else. What goals do you have? Maybe you’re wanting to create a schedule that devotes more time to being with family. Think about the problems and goals that you want your schedule to accomplish. 

  • Tip 2: Brainstorm with the kids
    • After you think about what you want, talk with the kids. Let them have input on the schedule. This will increase the likelihood of them following the new schedule and create a sense of ownership as they helped create it. 
  • Tip 3: Be realistic
    • Examine your goals, priorities, and life as a whole. Ask what is most important to you and your kids. Make these the top priorities. 
    • Be careful to avoid overscheduling. This can increase stress on the kids and create more problems. It can be good to have free space and down time each day instead of constant activities. 

  • Tip 4: Write it down
    • Post this new schedule where everyone can see. Talk about this finalized copy with the kids, so there aren’t any questions. Focus on clarity and address any questions. 

  • Tip 5: Try it for a week & update
    • Do a week-long test run! After the week is over, think about what went well and what needs improvement. Make any changes, and do it again! 
    • This is an area where kids can help contribute as well. Ask them for feedback as well for you to consider when updating it. 
  • Tip 6: Be Patient
    • Changes can be hard on everyone. Be patient with yourself and your kids as you implement these changes. It can take kids a minute to adjust especially if there are new expectations or limitations added into the schedule such as earlier bedtimes or less screen time. 
    • Be consistent in your approach to the schedule. It’ll take a moment for everyone to adjust, but it’ll be worth it when the process is complete. 

While it can take a moment to craft the perfect schedule and get it to stick, they bring many benefits to the whole family!