Full disclosure, I am not a parent and had to borrow my sister’s 5 kids to delve into a morning routine for students. They were excited to be a part of my research and I think they even picked up a few good habits throughout the process too.
Obviously, all kids are unique in their own way and I certainly noticed that as I tried to create a one-and-done routine for my nieces. That didn’t work, so we came up with a few variations.
My nieces range from 11 years old to 17 years old. So grammar school to junior year of high school.
The First Step to Creating a Morning Routine for Students
My nieces attend three different schools, grammar, middle, and high school. That means they all have different start times, so they must be ready to leave the house or be at the bus stop at different times.
In their household this worked out perfectly, we were able to stagger their morning routines.
With each of them, we took that ‘be ready to leave the house’ time and worked backward, adding in timing for each step in their morning routine.
Things we estimated times on were:
- The basics of getting ready: shower, brush teeth, dry hair, etc.
- Stretch and get mentally prepared for the day
- Gather supplies for the day: books, homework, lunch, etc.
- Puppy snuggles time (this was for the youngest- she just loves her puppies)
Once we finalized the list for each of them, we estimated the time for each part of their morning routine. Adding them all together we came up with the time they needed to wake up in order to leave the house on time without the need to rush.
Personalizing a Routine to Fit Your Child’s Specific Needs
It’s important to take into account if your child is a morning person or not. It’s good to consider if they need downtime in the morning before they start what is usually a hectic and overwhelming day of school. Again, every morning routine for students is going to be a bit different.
Take the time to consider each child and incorporate into their morning what is needed.
We already knew that one of my nieces is not a morning person. For her, we created an evening routine to eliminate some of the pressure and timeline in the morning. In order for her morning to be successful, and for her to feel prepared and not in a mad rush for school, she started to shower at night and prepare her bookbag before she went to bed.
We also put together a short stretching routine for her in the morning to get her blood flowing and help her to fully wake up before getting ready. Now when she wakes she does shoulder circles, neck rolls, side-to-side twists, and touches her toes. This only takes her a few minutes but has significantly changed her start to the day.
You know your child and what works for them. As you build their routine look for ways to support them and help them prepare for the day ahead. This will likely look different for most students. The goal is to set them up for a successful day.
Basics for Each Morning Routine for Students
Here are a few things that each of my nieces does in the morning regardless of the personalization of their routine.
- Drink an 8 oz glass of water- hydration is key!
- Take a few moments to practice gratefulness- focus on the good and what makes us happy and what we are thankful for
- Write down three affirmations- positive statements for positive change
- Movement- either stretching, yoga or working out- get the blood flowing
- Healthy breakfast- overall nourishment which helps with concentration and focus
- Getting ready- the basics
As their morning routines evolved they all settled into some form of the above list. At first, adding extras to their morning seemed a bit daunting as they were used to each morning being a rush to get to school.
Over time, we slowly built up their routine by adding one component at a time. The above took 4-6 weeks to fully form for them. And they continue to incorporate these steps into their morning routine.
Adjust Your Child’s Morning Routine as Necessary
This was not necessarily an easy process with my nieces. For one, I don’t live with them, so we would connect daily about their routine and make adjustments as needed.
It only took a few days to realize that they each required different things in their morning routine. And then we tweaked it as needed.
They still make adjustments depending on the season, their sports, their school workload, etc.
But one thing is for sure, they love having time to themselves in the morning, even if it’s just a few minutes to connect with themselves, and ensure they have time to do what they need in the morning.
They no longer rush, forget things at home that they need for the day, or feel overwhelmed at the start of their day.
Having a morning routine for students in your household creates ownership of their day. It also organizes their morning and allows them to feel in control of their routine.
Give it a try, take it step-by-step, and let me know how it goes in the comments below.
Check out tips for your own morning routine here!