Kids Daily Routine Chart: Tips & Routine Chart Printables
Remember the movie Groundhog Day? Where Phil gets stuck in a time warp, and his day repeats over and over again? Well, my family life often feels like that movie. Most days follow the same old routine. But, when we’re talking about parenting and discipline, guess what? This same old routine works to our advantage. If we can teach our kids to follow the same routine every day, we eliminate a lot of nagging and reminding to make sure they get their work done. And the easiest way to set up routines is to use a Kids Daily Routine Chart:
Here are some important tips for setting up and using your kids’ routine charts:
- Set up the chart together. Make sure your child knows what your expectations are, but give them as many choices as you can. They could choose which order to put them in, how to design the chart, what pictures to use, etc.
- If your child forgets their responsibilities or gets distracted, you might have to give gentle reminders like, “What’s next on your chart?”
- You can motivate your child by making an agreement that after everything is done on their chart, they can have their screen time or outside time (let them help you decide what that motivation will be).
- It might also help to set a timer, and have them try to “beat the clock.” Time timer is a great one for kids.
- Don’t pay your child for completing their chart. This is something that’s expected, not optional. Also, don’t give rewards, except rarely. It might help for them to earn a reward the first week they complete it to help them get excited about it and in the habit, but after that don’t give out rewards.
- You might notice that after they get used to the routine, they won’t need to use the chart anymore. And that’s good! That means it’s become a habit and ingrained into their memory. You can still keep it displayed as a visual reminder of their responsibilities.
- Remember to be firm but flexible. On days when you’re not in your “Groundhog Day” mode, let your kids take a break from some of the non-essential responsibilities. Just make sure you talk together about what still needs to be accomplished.
Adapted from Positive Discipline Tool Cards (paid link) by Dr. Jane Nelsen
Routine charts have helped my kids develop good habits of responsibility. Some of my kids don’t need that visual reminder, but the ones that get easily distracted have definitely benefited. Even with my oldest teen, having him type in tasks on the Trello app helped us come to an agreement on what he needed to do after school and before using his laptop or phone.
I love putting the routine in charge, and having more order in my home!
Routine Phone Apps
You can also try these apps:
Happy Kids Timer App: This android/iphone app has a countdown timer for each task, you can customize it with your own picture. I like how you can change the settings and order of the tasks.
Trello App: My teen used this to write down the tasks he needed to accomplish every school day.