Routine – what’s all the fuss about?!?!

English: Group of children in a primary school...

English: Group of children in a primary school in Paris Español: Niños en una escuela elemental en París Français : Enfants dans une école élémentaire à Paris (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It’s a new year at school and we are settling into our routines nicely now.  The children are getting to know the teachers and the teachers are finding out how each child responds and what they like and dislike.

It’s really amazing how teachers can tell whether a child has a routine at home or whether they don’t.  We have children who eat “around the room” and some who can sit at the table and eat their lunch.  This tells us that a child doesn’t have boundaries in this area at home.  We can tell when children get to have things “their way” all the time or whether or not they have to take turns and share.  It really doesn’t take much to figure out whether the child rules the home or whether the parents do.  It’s not rocket science and it isn’t really all that hard to figure out.  If a child does not have a regular bedtime we can tell that too.  We can even tell when a child lives with grandparents or if a home has been split and the parents are not living together anymore.  Children are open books and their actions tell a lot about what happens in their family dynamic.

Routine plays a big role in how children interact with one another and with adults.

You might be thinking “what’s all the fuss”, routine can be boring.  And you’re right about that.  Adults can find routine very voring.   But it’s not boring for a child.  Routine is comforting.  Routine helps regulate mood.  It plays a role in how children eat.  It plays a big part in a persons life.   It enables the child to feel safe and it helps a child to regulate their own behaviors and it dictates how a child responds to almost everything.

If you’re unsure of this, come visit a Preschool.  Watch the children.  Observe their reactions.  Observe when the routine is changed and their response to it.

Children can weather through the changes in life if their family life is stable and their is routine within that stability but if that is shaken then a child loses the ability to know what is safe, right or wrong.

You might be wondering what you can do about it if your family homelife has become unstable for some reason.  You might wonder how your kids will turn out.  If this is the case for you, start giving your child more routine in their life and you’ll see a change in how they respond.  They’ll feel safer, more calm, they will be easier to manage and it’ll probably be a great thing for you too.

Don’t underestimate the power of routine.  Try it out today.  You’ll be glad you did.

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