SummaryFour experienced homeschooling moms on how a good morning routine helps you motivate the kids, brings you closer to God, and showers blessings on your home.
A morning routine helps to establish expectations with little learners, and for parents, it can be a refreshing and peaceful moment to ask for God’s grace.
I try to wake up before our kids and say a quick prayer over my morning coffee. It is a great way for to thank God for another day with a fresh outlook.
When the kids wake up, we start our day with breakfast and prayers, usually praying for special intentions. Our kids have become accustomed to the expectation of doing their morning work independently (Handwriting, Spelling, Vocabulary, Reading and Religion reading). Our Religion questions or discussions are done as a family with dad at the dinner table.
Setting up this independent work in the morning can give the kids a sense of accomplishment and gives parents time to work one on one with a child on tougher, meatier subjects.
When you start with a good routine and have expectations in place, homeschooling tends to have a rhythm and smoothness to it. Always remember that if the day feels lost or out of sorts: stop and say a prayer, regroup, and know that tomorrow is another day for learning and loving God together.
Mary Beth Balint
Imagine everyone eating breakfast, completing chores, and ready to start school at the same time each day. While there may be times we accomplish this dream, we also have times when our children have other ideas.
We have babies who want to be fed at four in the morning, toddlers who are more interested in running around and being adorable, and teenagers who slowly descend the stairs still in their pajamas. The idea of ever having a morning routine may seem impossible, but it does not have to be!
Children of all ages need structure and starting the day with specific goals is necessary to help them develop good habits.
Taking into consideration the ages and stages of our family should dictate how and when we start our day. Develop realistic routines and chores for the different ages of your children, but have flexibility in the timing of when they are accomplished.
If your little ones are up with the sun, let them start their morning tasks and if your teenagers need a little more sleep, have them complete morning chores when they wake up.
Encourage your kids to pray the Morning Offering and remember to praise their morning accomplishments!
PRAY. I cannot stress this enough. In the morning, my wonderful husband brings me a cup of coffee before he leaves for work at 5:30 and together we do morning prayers.
After he leaves, I pull out my Bible and Bible study and spend some time with the Lord. Morning offering, rosary, chaplet, whatever works for you. Even something small, start the day talking to Our Savior. Fill your own tank first and feel ZERO guilt about it. You cannot give from an empty cup.
Get adequate sleep. Make sure you eat a healthy breakfast, and work in some exercise at some point during the day, even if it’s just 10 minutes walking with your baby outside. If you are up a lot nursing and feeding an infant or with a sick child, adjust the schedule and sleep.
I get the kids started on morning chores early and regularly. Mine make beds and clean up breakfast, sweep the floor, and tidy their rooms. Everyone works better when there is a little order in the chaos of homeschooling life, when they know what to expect. Begin with the end in mind.
I try to make mornings special. Maybe it is a morning basket, maybe hot cocoa out of everyone’s favorite mug. With young ones it might be circle time, whatever makes the long day ahead of you a little brighter, just do it. Homeschooling is a marathon, not a sprint. Tweak your plan as your seasons of life change and adjust your little domestic church accordingly.
My personal routine looks like an alarm buzzing at 7am. I place my cellphone in the adjoining bathroom before I go to sleep which means I get out of bed to turn it off. I never hit snooze. I go from bed to shower.
Owning a restaurant means my husband works most evenings; so mornings are my opportunity to have a bit of time sans mothering duties. My spouse agreed to handle waking the children. He ensures they set about their own morning routines.
I use the first hour of the day to wash, dress, fix my hair, put on a bit of make-up, and make our bed. Taking the time for personal hygiene, getting dressed and tidying my bedroom sets me on the path to accomplishment before I have even set foot outside the bedroom door in the morning.
Next, I wrangle up the hampers and deposit them in the laundry room. A cup of black coffee follows and then the rosary. We never skip this last step, even if it means that schooling is postponed. Between 8:00 and 8:30 am we collect around the dining room table (aka breakfast table, aka school table) and pray a rosary as a family. Starting the day with prayer sets the tone for the day to follow.
Over the years, my morning routine has changed. Once upon a time (X’s 8) my mornings included nursing sessions, diaper changes, and making breakfast for the children.
Today, I have a bit more freedom, but then as now, having a routine got my day started off on a firm footing.