Morning Routines To Start the Day for Kids with ADD

Help Your Child Start the Day Out Right

If you aren’t a morning person, getting your kids up and out the door on time for school can be quite a challenge. It is easy to fall into the pattern of being late or in the rush, rush, rush pattern. Neither one of these is helpful for our children. Avoid the morning rush with planning and preparation. When morning time is unhurried and organized, everyone is more relaxed and the day begins much brighter.

10 Tips for Making Morning More Manageable

  1. Make a schedule. Younger children may enjoy using a picture chart to illustrate their morning schedule. For older children who are reading, a written schedule is often helpful.
  2. Have your child lay out school clothes the night before, including shoes, socks, and any other accessories. Not only will this help make getting dressed easier in the morning, it will prevent meltdowns around what to wear.
  3. Make school snacks and lunches the night before. Have your child assist you with this or, if they are old enough, they may do this on their own. Provide supervision as needed. You don’t want your teenager opening his lunch bag mid-way through the school day to find only a bag of chips and crackers that he haphazardly threw together. A healthy lunch is essential in getting through the school day with your best foot forward.
  4. Have your child designate areas for all necessary school items, such as book bag, lunch box, glasses, etc. Help your child get into the routine of putting these items in their designated spots so they are easy to find in the morning.
  1. Wake up at least 45 minutes before your children so you have plenty of time to get dressed and prepare breakfast before your child comes into the kitchen. Your child will feel much more relaxed when you are relaxed and unhurried.
  2. Keep breakfast simple, but healthy. Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day. Make sure your child’s breakfast is balanced and wholesome and can sustain him until lunchtime. A combination of complex carbohydrates, protein, and a small amount of fat helps prevent hunger symptoms for hours.
  1. Keep electronic distractions off in the morning. Use the morning time to talk and be with your child during breakfast and in preparation for school. Make a rule that there be no television, computer, video games, etc. during this time.
  2. Many children, especially those with ADD/ADHD, benefit from a little outdoor play before school time. Physical exercise has been found to help improve concentration and mental focus and decrease restlessness. If your child is full of energy in the morning, be sure to set aside some time for a little exercise (running, jumping, skipping) outside before school.
  3. Make sure you and your child are both getting enough sleep at night. If your child is hard to wake in the morning, review his bedtime routines and see where you might be able to make helpful adjustments. A good night’s sleep makes everyone feel better and when everyone feels better morning time runs smoother.
  4. When it’s time to head out the door to get into the car or meet the school bus, be sure to send your child on his way with loving, kind words and a hug.

    Additional Reading:
    Top 10 Back-to-School Tips
    Practical Strategies at Home for Moms with ADD
    The Importance of Sleep
    Girls and ADD
    ADHD and Nutrition
    Tips for Maintaining a Scream-Free Home

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