Step one: Ask yourself what time you should start?
Consider what time your family members tend to wake up, and how many cups of coffee you need to turn into a functioning adult. My family settled on 9:30am.
Step two: Make the schedule the night before if possible
Check your work obligations that will require your full attention. Schedule totally independent activities during that time, like Art for Kids Hub draw alongs or Ipad learning time.
Step three: Consider their personalities
If you have some flexibility, consider when your children work their best. My family tends to work well together in the morning, and then they get sick of each other after lunch. To accommodate this I have them do activities together as much as possible in the morning, and then do their own separate schedules, sometimes-in separate rooms in the afternoon.
Step Four: Move those little bodies
One guideline from SHAPE America (Society of Health and Physical Educators) is that children ages 3-5 years old should be engaged in 60 minutes of structured physical activity and 60 minutes of unstructured physical activity per day. You need to consider how your day can be a mix of gross motor and fine motor activities. Gross motor skills like running, dancing, and jumping need to be sprinkled throughout the day. Consider using things your kid might be familiar with from school such as GoNoodle. This website is utilized by many has elementary teachers for “brain breaks”. It guides children to dance and move along to entertaining videos.
In addition to these brain breaks, our family’s schedule includes an hour and a half for lunch/recess. For children to be successful during their structured time, they need some unstructured time to relax and unwind.