According to Dr. Peter Gorski of the Harvard Medical School, maintaining a schedule provides a strong foundation for success. Children’s future endeavors are more likely to succeed when they know to what to expect from an activity. Thus, they will be more confident in accomplishing tasks.
Dr. Gorski added that when your child knows what to expect, it allows him to freely decide and fearlessly take risks. When he does not know what’s going on, the opposite happens and he won’t be able to effortlessly do what he has to do because fear took over.
A routine is helpful during mundane daily activities like going to sleep or getting ready for school. When you follow a routine, as a parent, you lessen the stress for yourself. It may seem futile at first, but maintaining the smallest routine can create a huge difference. If you wish to start a routine at home, I have written 3 ideas for you:
- Eat together as a family. Having at least one meal per day at the table allows your kids to share the highlights of their day and feel your love and support if something is bothering them. It is also an opportunity for you to introduce new tasks for them like bringing the silverware to the table, setting the table, washing the dishes, and cleaning up. If you don’t have time to prepare for dinner, even a 10-minute breakfast will do. This is a great time for everyone to share their schedules for the day ahead.
- Plan a bedtime routine. Whether you choose to read a bedtime story, bathtime, or sing a lullaby, always do the agreed routine in the same manner every night. Find out what calms your child and personally, I encourage you to include talking to the list. Inquire about his day at school and let him freely share his experiences and activities about that day. This activity will help in improving his memory, language skills, and most importantly, it will show how much you care.
- Work together in making a schedule. You don’t have to nag about what he needs to do. You can ask his help and list all his tasks in a fun way. Be creative and cut out pictures. After you’ve finished, you can hang the creative artwork in his room. Your child will always be reminded on the necessary steps and at the same time, you have provided the opportunity to be independent in deciding steps for their routine, and giving them space to carry out each part.
Because young children cannot grasp the concept of time yet, having a regular schedule provides an efficient way to organize their daily lives. It is never too late to introduce a new routine and know that some plans won’t work out right away. It may require extra patience and determination at first, but you need to stick to the new routine. It’s normal for your child to resist, but remember the benefits far outweigh the difficulty in establishing a new routine at home.
Although instilling the importance of routine is valuable, do not be too harsh. As a parent, you also need to learn to adapt with the changes. If something urgent interrupts the agreed routine, attend to the pressing issue first and then explain that tomorrow the usual schedule will resume.
The earlier you work on a way to systemize your child’s daily life, the simpler things will be in the future. When you adhere to a specific routine every day, you encourage your child to schedule his plans in a productive and efficient way. This sense of time and order will definitely help him in the future as he plans his own life.
At JAMS, we will help your child overcome the fear of numbers. Your child will become more confident and most importantly, he will gain an important lifelong skill. For more information, just visit JamsPortland.com to learn more about the teaching pillars of the abacus.