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How to Build a Good Morning Routine for Kids
Dawn patrol, school, or another lazy weekend, your morning routine is key to starting the day with good vibes only. Raising three blonde-headed groms, I've learned a thing or two about building a morning routine for kids that beautifully and perfectly introduces them to the day.
Whether energized surf kids who wake up effortlessly before the sun or lazy adolescents who prefer dreams over sunrise, here's how I've learned how to build a good morning routine that works wonderfully for everyone.
Because the thing is, my morning routine is their morning routine, and the key to morning bliss lies in the delicate integration of all our personal needs, so we might as well do it right, no?
Things Change. Routines Change, Too
As we know, kids are unique, and we need to give them room to grow into themselves, both long term and every individual day. So work with them, be their mentor in sharing the importance and benefit of a morning routine, but always be open to adjusting and changing things as needed.
Nothing is always perfect, and your kid's morning routine won't be, either. Although consistency is important and very much part of the deal, just do your best in structuring and curating this concept. Use a morning routine as your baseline to keep life organized and flowing as soon as all eyes are open, but don't put too much pressure on yourself or them to maintain perfection.
Once you dial a morning routine in, many of the characteristics become second nature, and that's really what a routine is. With time and execution, you'll know what your kids and yourself need for every variation of a morning and any side of the bed they wake up on.
How to Create a Healthy, Happy Morning Routine for Kids
A few things that work for us that just might work for you, too.
Mornings: The Perfect Time for Family Time
A Gentle Introduction to the Day
A morning routine begins with waking your kids' sleeping eyes. There's no need for the dreaded strain of harsh, noisy alarm clocks that start the day with a jolt of adrenaline to the heart, scaring them from a deep sleep.
To approach this gently, take time with the process, as waking up slowly has proven to be quite beneficial. Let them relax and take their time. A soft touch and your mild voice coaxing them out of slumber will wake them with peace and tranquility.
As they wake, you can start introducing subtle, natural light into the room by cracking the windows. Do this a little, give them some time to continue waking, and then continue to open the blinds for more light to ease them in.
After I wake them, I like to play mellow music from within the kitchen. It shows them that we're up and alive, happily greeting the day, and they're eager to join in the brekky endeavors.
If you're not good at waking your kids up or if they're growing to the point where waking up becomes their responsibility, then I definitely suggest some form of a meditation/sunrise alarm clock as your ally to a natural sleep cycle.
Be Their Source of Positivity
Children not only feel the effects of their parents' moods, but more often than not, they emulate them through their own state of mind.
You probably already know this, but we have so much influence over how they feel, and we can use this for many health advantages.
To promote positivity in the morning, which is then carried throughout the rest of the day, be an additional ray of the already rising sunshine. For us, this means:
- Enhancing positive words of affirmation. Tell them they are special, unique, capable, and so on.
- Reminding them of something to look forward to.
- Ask them how they feel and what they expect out of the day.
- Playing subtle music.
- Connecting physically with a hug and a smile.
I think you get the idea. In the end, we're essentially the purveyors of their entire day, and we can use the morning time to instill massive amounts of positivity with the way we act and the emotions we exude.
A Hydrating Ritual
It's always healthier and more effective (in terms of feeling incredible) to stay hydrated than it is to rehydrate, and one of the best ways to hydrate quickly is to give yourself plenty of fluid in the morning. It doesn't take much, and incorporating a simple glass of water is a powerful means to enhance gut health, clear a fuzzy mind, and much more.
Hydrating will make you feel awake and alive, and if your kids become accustomed to stumbling into the kitchen and immediately chugging down a glass of water, then you're already setting things off on the right track.
Be the one to kickstart this healthy morning habit and work on helping them to realize, understand, and feel the benefits of incorporating hydration into a morning routine for kids.
Invite them Into the Kitchen
Inviting your groms into the kitchen to help whip up brekky is an addition to your kid's morning routine and a method to instill healthy eating activities. It's a bit cliche, but ensuring breakfast is part of a morning routine checks off so many boxes.
First, you engage them in the kitchen to build interest in healthy eating and cooking, teaching them all about different health foods, their benefits, and how to cook them. Second, and even more importantly, is the effect of eating a good breakfast.
Revitalizing energy, essential nutrients, and a beautiful activity to structure a morning around, brekky is the star of any morning routine show. Skip it, or don't do it right, and you're already heading downhill, resulting in fatigue, stomachaches, grogginess, and more.
My advice? Don't overcomplicate it! Sticking to a handful of easy, healthy breakfast recipes doesn't require loads of time or ingredients. Protein, greens, and some valuable calories to put to work later in the day are all ya need. If you:
- Avoid processed, fatty food with empty calories.
- Avoid processed sugars. Natural sugars, on the other hand, from sources like fruit, are a great addition to a morning routine for kids!
- Include fruits, veggies, and other whole foods.
- Do your best to avoid frozen food.
Then you're doing incredible.
Create a Morning Stretch Routine for Kids
Loosen up tired joints and get the blood flowing with a morning stretch routine for kids. Plus, you'll get moving around with them!
In the morning, we feel the consequences of the day before, the tired legs and sore muscles, and you don't want to carry any of this tension with you during the rest of the day.
After hydrating, engage in 10-15 minutes of stretching. It'll help wake your kids up, you'll all feel loosey-goosey and ready for the day, and you'll maintain flexibility for the long term. Plus, chances are we're headed to skate or surfskate later, so if you're doing anything physical, this is a great warm-up stretch sesh to prevent injury and further soreness while increasing performance.
Get Outside! Even if for a Little
Want to know how to build a good morning routine? If you manage to get outside, whether for minutes or hours, you're doing it right.
Making outside time part of a kid's morning routine will connect them to nature, nurturing individuals with a passion for the outdoors, a desire for sunshine and fresh air, an understanding of our connection with the Earth, and a love for what she has to offer.
If you just have a little time, a short grounding session walking barefoot on the grass and dew is a potent technique to instill calmness, relaxation and lower inflammation throughout the body. And if you have a little more time, think of:
- Catching a sunrise
- A morning beach walk
- Hitting an easy trailhead
- Meditating on the front porch
- Performing your morning stretch routine outside
- A morning surfskate or chill bike ride
And so much more. Allow creativity to inspire you in how your family gets outside and moves in the morning hours.
Structure is Good
Foldin' Up Her Radical Kid's Clothes
A good morning routine for kids isn't just about the fun stuff. It's also about teaching responsibility, organization, and productivity. I suggest outlining a few sets of small tasks, essentially chores that are meant to be completed in the morning hours.
If you like, creating a morning routine chart for kids is an excellent asset in structuring this setup. Making the bed, brushing their teeth, washing their dishes. It's all about ensuring the simple life necessities are being taken care of, and they'll take these hygiene/cleanliness practices and this sense of responsibility into the rest of their growing lives.
A Kid's Morning Routine Starts at Night
So much of building a good morning routine begins the night before. To work towards this, also remember to focus on pre-morning rituals, again enhancing responsibility in their personalities. Teaching them to look out for their future by doing things in the present is a huge life lesson, and it'll improve all your mornings.
After working towards building proper sleep habits and ensuring you're getting plenty of sleep, have them help you with their lunches for the next day, journal and reflect, and schedule plans for tomorrow or the week.
Any activity performed the night before to compliment the following morning is a healthy, integral, and necessary part of naturally growing into good morning habits.
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Live rad, stay salty.
- Ash, Dev & The Salty Shreds Fam.