The Daily Schedule
Routines and schedules are very important for young children. It provides them with a sense of security to know what’s going to happen next, and from that security stems the ability to confidently learn, explore, experiment, and discover. Especially now that children’s lives seem to be more action packed and fast paced than ever before, we strive to provide a daily schedule that is structured enough for our children to feel secure, yet flexible enough to meet the needs of our entire diverse group.
At school we have parts of the day that are quiet, loud, active, passive, child led, teacher led, and so on. Balancing the day to meet the needs of all our young learners is extremely important to giving every child the chance to be successful. We also post the schedule at their level with both words and pictures so they can easily determine which part of the day is coming next. This helps keep transitions smooth and tear-free!
You can also implement a simple schedule at home during the mornings, weekends or evenings to help your children feel secure and successful, and to aide in their transitions between school and home. We’ve found that charts the children can “read” (words and pictures together) can help a child be more excited to independently do things such as get ready in the morning! A morning schedule could look something like this with simple words next to each picture (Wake Up, Get Dressed, Eat, Brush Teeth, Get in Car).
It may seem silly to have a picture schedule for routines in your own home but it can make the mornings (or evenings/weekends) happier and easier for your child—and you! A picture schedule can lead your child to work more independently and gain the confidence to do things for themselves. These self-help skills will be vital for succeeding in Kindergarten and beyond! I highly recommend giving it a try for any transitions you and your child struggle with (a great one is a chart for getting all those snow clothes on in the winter!), after all you have nothing to lose and only happier, more independent children to gain!