More than Christmases and birthdays, our family started looking forward to summer the most since the first-born entered school. Since the kids typically have their schedules now, that’s the period when we can go anywhere without thinking of classes the next day. It’s also OK for everyone to sleep in or plan exciting activities out of town.
The only thing I dread during such a long vacation is the time when it’ll end. It isn’t difficult to get used to lazy days that summertime brings, and so going back to the routine after that is like torture for all, especially for kids.
That’s the reason why I tried doing something different last summer to remedy that problem. Keep on reading to work out how to get your family back on the schedule as well.
- Be Clear About The Situation
Melanie Greenberg, PhD, wrote about the adverse effects of nagging your children. “Most parents are familiar with the early morning rush to get everybody out the door on time—along with their lunches, gym clothes, musical instruments, signed homework, and so on. The child who gets distracted and seems unmotivated to get ready on time is the greatest challenge to a busy parent.” She said, “The problem with nagging, however, is that you are actually training kids to ignore you—they know there will always be more reminders down the road.”
From my experience, talking to the children regarding the impending conclusion of their break at least two weeks before it happens is necessary. It gives them the chance to dive into the old routine slowly, so there will no longer be whining once the academic year begins.
You may do it even when your kid is just about to enter 1st grade. Though they are young, they still need to prepare their minds for school beforehand.
- Choose Sleeping Times
I came to understand as well that you can only tell your children when to sleep and not hear any complaint while they’re still below the age of seven. As soon as it goes beyond that, they may start asking for extensions and whatnot.
What you can do in case you see yourself in this circumstance is a call for a quick family meeting concerning the best time for everybody to go to bed. That includes the mom and the dad because some kids think it’s unfair that adults can stay up later than them. There may be free nights, of course, but sleeping as much as the kids may prove to be great for you too. Not to mention, that’ll coax them to rest along with the other family members without a fuss.
According to Michael J. Breus, PhD, “Developing consistent evening routines and regular bedtimes generally works best when parents start this practice early, giving children the chance to accept the nighttime schedule as a non-negotiable part of everyday life.
- Reiterate The Rules
Children can be like senior citizens, in the sense that they fail to immediately recall stuff that they used to do after weeks of not doing it. Thus, your priorities should comprise helping them remember the do’s and don’ts when they have to follow a specific schedule.
The list can consist of what they need to accomplish before you pick them up from school, e.g., packing their bags and staying near the entrance. Then, you may remind them once more of their homework, relaxation, and eating times.
- Eat Together
Speaking of foods, the entire family should eat together regardless of your busy calendars. You can’t all be in sync if the parent always has to stay out late or one of the kids has extracurricular activities during mealtime.
An ideal scenario is that you consume breakfast, lunch, and dinner together. “Shared meals provide an excellent opportunity for good parenting—i.e., spending quality time and quantity time with one’s children,” wrote Christopher Peterson, PhD. “In families that frequently eat together, the children benefit in innumerable ways. They are happier and healthier, perhaps because they eat more nutritious meals. They get better grades. They are less likely to smoke, drink, or use other drugs. They have better relationships with their parents and with their siblings.”
However, considering it may not occur due to various commitments outside the household, you can pick a single time that’s favorable for everyone. Even for just an hour or two, you will be able to bond as a family and remain on the same page.