School Morning Routines: Get Out the Door with a Smile (and On Time!)

morning routines

Morning Routines. We all have them.

  • Pull the kids out of bed (or maybe they pull YOU out of bed).
  • Turn on the TV so you can get breakfast ready.
  • Scream for the kids to stop watching the TV and eat breakfast.
  • Scream for the kids to finish eating breakfast and find some clothes.
  • Scream for the kids to stop watching TV and find their shoes.
  • Walk out the door 20 minutes late with stressed out and frustrated kids and parents.

Sound familiar?

Thankfully, these morning routines are easily adaptable. With a few small changes, you can make your morning routines a well oiled machine that produces a happy family walking out the door ON TIME and with minimal fuss.

Here are some tips to make your morning routines a bit less stressful: 

Morning Routines002

NO…Absolutely NO Screen Time

If your children are anything like mine, anything with a screen = impenetrable captivation. Let’s face it mom, you canNOT compete with Super Mario Brothers, Donkey Kong, Skylanders OR Jessie. Don’t even try.

Sure your kids might fuss. Sure they might follow you around the first few days lamenting “…but, but, but what can I doooooooooooooo?“. Remember though, this is for the greater good. Over time though, you won’t have to wage war for their attention and mornings will automagically (it’s a word. Well my 6 year old says it is) go easier in the mornings.

Morning Routines001

Wake up EARLY(IER) 

I know, I know. You already feel like you wake up at the crack of dawn. If you are scrounging for time though, you aren’t getting up early enough. If you are rubbing your eyes while shuffling kids out the door, you aren’t getting up early enough.

Get up at LEAST 30 minutes before the kids. Grab yourself a cup of coffee, or a cup of tea, or a tall glass of ice water. Whatever gets you going in the morning. Take a shower. Just sit and read your Bible/stare out the window/do your yoga practice. Just WAKE UP.

When those kiddos run down the stairs you’ll be ready for them.

Morning Routines003

Do as MUCH as you can the NIGHT before (or on Sunday!)

Baths, clothes picked out, shoes and accessories picked out, be sure homework is DONE, bags by the door, lunches packed, paperwork signed, supplies replenished, extracurricular stuff washed/prepped/bagged, etc etc etc. Basically you want your job to be feeding them and getting them dressed and out the door in the morning. That’s it (and trust me…that’s plenty).

Set TIME goals so you know early on if you are running behind

Kids wake up at 7? Need to be out the door by 8? Set up time goals. You know the kids can eat breakfast in 20 minutes. Plan for breakfast to be over by 7:20. If it’s 7:30 and they are  still lingering, you are running late. Dressed by 7:40.

The GREAT thing about doing this, is that you can work some padding into your mornings. Time to snuggle, chat, and enjoy each other. Sending everyone off to school with happy and full hearts.

NOTE: Don’t leave TOO much padding. Then they get “bored”.

 Be calm

Screaming helps no one. Sure you’ll lose your cool sometimes. Try to make the morning routine as fun/calm/peaceful as possible. It will start everyone’s day off right.

Do you have any tips for how to ease the morning rush? Comment below!


Tell us what you think:

  1. Vicki says

    Our son sleeps in his school clothes. He puts them on right before bed instead of pjs. His doesn’t wear anything that we have to worry about getting wrinkled and I don’t have to scream at him every morning, less stress and frustration for both if us. It sounds crazy, but it works!

  2. LK says

    I still prep everything the night before (lunches, backpacks, signed slips, etc.) and my kids are in 7th grade. They still LOVE notes in their lunches. They save every one of them. I send a random note of atta boy / atta girl out of the blue, about the most mundane stuff… “thanks for setting the table last night, it really helped the family!” I try to get a note in their lunch boxes at least once per week and the more mundane, the better, because they remember these notes and remember the accolades! It’s awesome!

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