Early morning before school feels like chaos at times, but everyone knows how you start the day sets the mood for the rest of the day. That’s why parents need to try different tricks to make school mornings easier.
It took quite a while for us to find our morning groove.
I hated yelling at my kids, but the stress of rushing around and trying to get them ready so early in the morning drove me nuts. I never felt like anything went smoothly, so I knew things needed to change.
It doesn’t have to be chaos. If you’re ready to make school mornings easier, here are some tips for happier kids and less chaos for you.
12 Tips to Make School Mornings Easier
1. Make Sure Everyone Gets Sleep
Having a good morning truly starts the day before. Make sure all your kids have a bedtime that ensures they receive ample sleep; they all need age-appropriate bedtimes. You also need to make sure you get enough sleep as well; if you’re dragging in the morning, you’ll be grumpy.
Everyone differs based on how much sleep they need, but most kids need at least ten hours of sleep to feel really good.
Stick to a bedtime schedule and be strict about it!
2. Start Getting Ready the Night Before
The first change I made when I decided to make school mornings easier was to start prepping the night before. Showers and bath time happen at time, and make sure your kids pick out an outfit the night before. Lay everything out, accessories included.
I also like to talk to my kids about the next day’s schedule the night before. Kids love to know what’s coming up – I don’t blame them.
Make sure homework is completed, backpacks are packed, and any projects are ready to go.
3. Prep Lunches Before
When my kids go to bed, I also start to prep their lunches. I keep all of their lunch supplies in one area to make the process easier. Some things need to stay in the fridge until the morning, but I like to have everything picked out and prepared. In the morning, all I have to do is pack everything up and it’s done!
Related: 22 School Lunch Ideas Your Kids Will Love
4. Get Up Before Your Kids
I never liked getting up early; climbing out of bed is the worst feeling sometimes, but getting those few minutes alone in the morning is key to starting the day on the right foot.
I grab a cup of coffee, let my dogs outside, and breathe. Giving myself a few minutes of “me” time makes a big difference, and I often feel more ready to face the day ahead.
This is one of those tips that I tried to avoid when I was figuring out how to make school mornings easier. I felt like this couldn’t make much of a difference, but it does. When you roll out of bed the same time as your children, you have to get all of your things completed before you start on them, and it automatically leads to a longer start time.
My weekday schedule makes sure I wake up before my kiddos!
5. Follow a Morning Routine
Something I’ve learned as a parent is that kids dig routines; adults are the ones who put up the fight about creating routines. Kids need some sort of control and understanding, so having daily routine gives them the security needed.
They want to know what has to come next.
Create a morning routine that is predictable and works for every school morning. I suggest posting one for the kids to see with pictures for the little ones who cannot read.
6. Make Easy Breakfasts
Kids need to eat before they go to school. I try to make sure my kids have good breakfasts before they leave; I know my day is always better when I start the day with a filling breakfast.
It doesn’t need to be a Pinterest-worthy breakfast.
Toss some pancakes (frozen!) and eggs on their plates. Make bagels and yogurt – just make sure they eat breakfast!
7. Be Organized with School Supplies and Gear
Being organized is another vital step to make school mornings easier. Your kids’ backpacks, shoes, sports gear, coats, and everything need a specific home and place to stay.
This is a habit that needs training and takes time, but teaching your kids to put away their items is something they benefit from learning. Not only does it make your life easier, but it also helps them. They’ll always know where their things are rather than running around searching!
Related: 12 Back to School Organization Ideas
8. Keep Clocks Visible
I suggest keeping clocks nearby for your kids to see. Put one in their bedroom, the bathroom, the kitchen, and anywhere else that makes sense.
Teaching your kids to pay attention to the clock is a life skill, and once they learn how to manage their time, it will surely make mornings easier!
9. Ditch Screen Time in the Morning
As much as your child wants his iPad, it’s a no-go in the mornings before school. Everyone knows that screen time is distracting, and when you have limited time to get ready, distracted
This goes for teens as well who are stuck on social media as much as possible. Keep the social media time until you’re on the way to school or afterward.
10. Double Check Before Leaving
No parent likes having to drive back to school because their child forgot something. You’re the last line of defense to make sure that doesn’t happen.
I suggest making a habit of teaching your child to check and re-check before leaving the house, but until that habit is solidified, you have to double check.
11. Keep a Basket of Extras in the Car
So your kids forgot something – it happens even when we think we have all the steps to prevent that from happening. Keep extras of everything in your car if possible.
Bring extra lunch money and store it in a baggie in the car. Bring extra jackets, shorts, shirts, socks, and school supplies.
Every parent has had a time when you get to school and their child realizes they forgot something – we all dread it. Be one step ahead!
12. Stay Calm and Be Relaxed
Your energy rubs off on them. If you’re stressed and mad, they become stressed and anxious. Even if your kid is moving as slow as molasses, breathe – being late sucks, but it isn’t the end of the world.
Despite what we think, our kids typically won’t move faster because we yell at them. Instead, they start to cry, and then everything starts to spiral like a waterfall.
Ditch the chaos and making school mornings easier for you and your kids. Everyone wants to start their day off on the right foot, so use these tips to create the calm, smooth mornings you want to have.
Make sure you share these tips with other mom friends of yours that have crazy mornings too!