Routine with kids can be hard to maintain at the best of times, add two homes into the mix and it can get really tricky! Here are four reasons why establishing a solid routine post separation might be the key to keeping the kids happy and healthy:
1. CONSISTENCY AND STRUCTURE
Having a routine in your household gives consistency and structure in your child’s life especially in times of change. When change is occurring routines can change very quickly but if you have a strong routine in place this offers some stability. It is also important to try and make sure the main parts of your routine at both houses are similar. These could be meal times, bath times and bed. This won’t always happen, so you must be open to flexibility but keeping them as similar as possible will help your child settle and have structure in-between both houses.
2. FAMILY TRADITIONS
Having a family routine creates moments to bond with your kids and gives opportunities to create new traditions. A common example is the bedtime story, no matter how chaotic the day was, it’s a moment to bond at the end of the day. Special occasions can also be weaved into the weekly routine such as seeing a movie or going out to get ice cream. In our house we go to the park after school every Friday, the kids know this and look forward to it.
3. CONFIDENCE AND INDEPENDENCE
Giving your kids a routine helps them build independence and confidence. Slowly introducing more chores around the house to your kids gives them more daily and weekly responsibilities. These responsibilities help your kids develop more independence around their house that translate into their daily lives and helps build confidence in their abilities to complete tasks.
4. GOOD HABITS
Creating a routine is an opportunity to implement good habits into your kid’s daily life such as making their bed, putting their lunches in their school bag or doing their homework at a particular time. These are good habits to get your children into, so they hopefully continue them throughout their schooling or use these structures to create their own routines once they get older. Using the ‘First this then that’ strategy is a great way to show your kids how FIRST we have to have our bath or tidy up and THEN we can read that book or then we can go to the park.
No Family is the same and creating a good routine doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time and patience and trial and error to see what works best for your family. What can you implement this week into your routine to make life easier?