Whether a seasoned homesteader or just beginning to homestead, having a productive morning is the most crucial thing for starting off your day well, especially when you work from home, homeschool your children, and have a large household to manage and maintain.
The beginning of the day is always a fresh start, yet it’s also the integral piece that will set the tone for how the rest of the day will go. Mama and Papa always need a great morning to have a great day, so they also need to encourage and train the children to do the same.
Reasons to Teach Children to Have Productive Mornings
There are many reasons why it’s essential to teach our children to have a productive morning. Productive mornings set the tone for the day ahead. If your children start their day with the right tone, they are more likely to have a fantastic day.
Structured mornings also set children into a state of productivity. They will be able to accomplish more during the day if they start by being productive rather than lounging around for a few hours. This is most effective when led by example.
Parents, they will follow your lead. Express your expectations, stand by them, and be an example by getting your morning off to a great start as well.
Why I Love the Benefits of Productive Mornings
Children will watch their parents live up to the examples set for them. If mom makes her bed daily, they will make their bed, too. This often happens without needing to teach them the “why” behind it. They simply follow the example set.
Remember that you are training these little people to develop successful habits. When a child brushes their teeth and makes their bed for almost two decades, they will continue to do these tasks out of habit for the rest of their life.
Through having a morning routine, your children will learn that they are an integral part of the purposes of the household. They are invaluable. They are needed and they absolutely have a reason to help others. Therefore, they have no reason to lay around being lazy the first part of the day.
Though we encourage ample free time later in the afternoon, a productive start to the day sets the pace. My children know when they have a productive morning, they can have hours of play later.
How Do You Make Mornings Less Stressful With Kids?
Plain and simple, mornings are less stressful when a routine has been established and enforced. We have a morning routine and daily routine that we teach our children which is enforced seven days a week (yes, even on the weekends).
We do have exceptions for early sunrises or illnesses (and on weekends may take the mornings more slowly), but by maintaining this morning routine each week, morning stress with children is minimized.
In our home, we enjoy pleasant and quiet mornings. So to ensure this happens, we start by requiring the early morning to be quiet for everyone.
To enforce this, we have a specific time when everyone can get up (which also means there’s a timeframe when they can’t get up). The tiny ones know they must stay in bed until a specific time.
Once the children are older (teenagers), they can get up whenever they want. They just need to remain very quiet.
What Should Kids Do in the Morning?
You may be wondering what makes for a productive morning? This may vary from household to household, but for us, this is the routine we use seven days a week, every week.
- Wake up: Our children know when they are allowed to get up and when they must be up.
- Make your bed: Making the bed marks off the first accomplishment of the day.
- Get dressed: We don’t allow pajamas to be in public areas. Staying out of pajamas makes for less temptation to start the day laying around. Of course, we make exceptions if they are sick or it’s a weekend.
- Brush your hair and teeth: Best habits ever.
- Have quiet time: This is a time for us to read our Bible and pray silently. It is so great to have quiet times in the morning. It’s a reflective time and a beautiful pattern to develop into adulthood. Even the toddlers have a picture Bible they can sit and look at in silence. Once they learn to read, it leads to a natural progression of gentle encouragement to spend time with God.
- Chore time: Each child already knows what tasks they are responsible for, so they get to them right away. These chores merely include the basics that have to get done each day. It includes light animal chores and dishwasher duties (for the little ones), and larger animal chores and kitchen chores (for the older ones). These should all be relatively quick and easy chores based on age appropriateness.
- Tidy your area of the house: Each child has been assigned one area of the home they are in charge of. So now they go through their site and do a quick tidy-up. It only takes two to five minutes. This helps the house stay in an overall state of tidiness.
- Productive work: Once the quick and easy chores are out of the way, now begins the productive work of the morning. This could be school work, cleaning the house, gardening, preserving, etc. They can check in with me to find out what they need to be working on and jump right in.
- Breakfast table time: We ensure we have a good solid meal every morning. Sometimes this is a quick and easy breakfast casserole or instant breakfast mix. We like to gather all together for breakfast so we can enjoy discussing what they read during quiet time, have family prayer time, and time to connect and discuss the day ahead. It’s a soft check-in and makes for some great discussions. They are also motivated to keep doing it each morning because they enjoy being heard, connecting, and being encouraged.
Transitions between each part of the routine require that each person accomplish tasks that need to be done and get ready for the next phase of the daily routine. Productive transitions keep things running smoothly.
With this simple morning routine, our children can have a sense of accomplishment first thing. It’s amazing how this sets up their day for success. I’m not saying every day is perfect, but we have noticed with a routine, there are fewer questions, less stress, less nagging, and an overall more peaceful environment.
A Note Regarding Chores
Chores are a must for children. If you didn’t read my post on the importance of chore time, I highly recommend doing so. Setting a consistent routine takes the guess-work out of each day not only for you, but for your children as well.
The schedule listed above is an example of our morning routine. You can use this for inspiration or a jumping-off point to create your own. For more tips, check out my posts on planning morning chores for children and how I manage our home.
So what is the best early morning habit for success? Teach your children (and yourself) how to have a productive early morning. This is such a great way to start the day and turn it into a life-long habit.
Household Management Masterclass
If you feel like you want to take your household management skills to the next level, consider joining my Household Management Class. In this masterclass, you’ll learn how to turn your household chaos into household peace.
It includes 17 full video lessons, my make-ahead breakfast casserole recipe eBook, and my household planning sheet printables. I’ll see you in class!