Best Daily Rituals for Young Kids
A daily routine is extremely important for a young child to set up their day in a positive manner and at the same time influence their overall productivity. As parents, keeping your kids occupied throughout the day might seem like a mammoth task, but with a daily routine in place, your kids will be more involved in what they do and will also help bring your family much closer. A daily schedule for kids gives them structure, helps them feel rooted and teaches them important time management skills.
So how do we as parents best fill the time for our kids at home? To establish a sense of conformity at home, a routine or a ritual helps your kids stay focused. With so much uncertainty around in the world, everyday might not seem like a day you conquer but it sure does help to be in control. Knowing how to handle the bad days makes a big difference. Keeping activities handy in place for your kid’s morning and bedtime ritual will definitely help free up some alone time for you too.
Here are some of the activities you can incorporate in your children’s daily ritual:
1. Reading: Reading is an important activity for young kids as it helps with their early cognitive development. Encourage your kids to read about things or topics that they are interested in - it could be about cars, the solar system or even dinosaurs. Get your kids graphic novels that will grab their attention. Reading is an important habit that will encourage learning at home.
2. Light exercise: Exercise is one activity that can be practiced either once you wake up or before bedtime. The best part about light exercise is that if you exercise with your kids in the morning, it’s a refreshing start to the day, and exercising towards bedtime helps your kids sleep better. Light exercises could either be doing easy stretches or even having a dance party with your kids.
3. Unstructured play: Unstructured play is a category of play that has no specific learning objective to it. The play is very open-ended and has no particular strategy. Let your child take the lead and be creative in their approach to play. Encourage unstructured play by exploring new environments, limiting screen time, having DIY craft kits at home and so on.
4. Keep a gratitude journal: Teach your kids to write about something that they have been grateful for in the day. It could be about any happy moment that they have experienced and are grateful for - be it meeting their friends after a long time or even having their favourite meal during the day. This helps your kids end their day on a positive note.
5. Doing chores: Let your kids help clear the dining table, load dishes into the dishwasher and do small chores around the house which will teach them important skills for lifetime. Helping around the house will help your child have a routine to follow everyday.
6. Morning walks: Staying active physically and mentally is important for your child. Go on a morning walk with your kids and get that early morning vitamin D from the warm sun. Explore nature with your kids when you go out for a walk and teach them about the importance of keeping the environment healthy.
7. Spend time with family: Indulge in conversation with your kids and ask them about how their day went. Spending time with your family is important during these times as it helps figure out what is actually going on in your kid’s mind and help them get through it. Plan activities to do with your kids during family time, like watching a movie, putting on a play and so on.
These daily routines or rituals can help strengthen your shared beliefs and values, and build a sense of belonging and togetherness in your family. Routines make your home a predictable environment for your kid. Having chores as part of family routines helps children and teenagers develop a sense of responsibility and some basic skills like time management. These are skills children can use for life. And when children can do their parts of the routine with less help or supervision from you, it also helps them become more independent. Daily routines help set our body clocks too. For example, bedtime routines help children’s bodies ‘know’ when it’s time to sleep. This can be a big help when children reach adolescence and their body clocks start to change.
As parents, routines take some time and effort to create. However, the benefits of a routine are tremendous. It helps your daily life be more structured and you can take some time to yourself. It can help you feel more organised and in control, which lowers your stress. Routines have many benefits, but it’s also good for children and parents to have free time to play, relax or be creative.
Plan a daily routine for your kid in the morning and before bedtime. Regular and consistent routines can help you feel like you’re doing a good job as a parent as every part of your day is planned and you will know what to expect and how to overcome it. Take daily routines as an opportunity to help your kids learn skills that they will use throughout their lives.