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Q:

How do you create a sense of structure and routine for your children while being a stay-at-home parent?

Hi everyone,

As a new stay-at-home parent, I'm struggling to create a structured routine for my children. I used to work full-time before I had my children, so I'm used to having a set schedule, but now that I'm at home all day with my kids, I find it difficult to stick to a routine. I want to make sure my kids have some stability and predictability in their day, but I'm not sure how to do that without becoming too rigid.

I have a 3-year-old and a 5-year-old, so I want to make sure they have enough time for play, learning, and rest. I also want to make sure they have a healthy diet and get plenty of physical activity, but again, I'm not sure how to structure our day in a way that can accommodate all those things.

So, I'm looking for some advice from other stay-at-home parents on how you create a sense of structure and routine for your kids. How do you balance playtime and learning time? How much screen time do you allow, if any? How do you handle meal times and nap times? Any tips or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

All Replies

gerhard.blanda

Hi there,

I'm a stay-at-home parent of two kids, aged 6 and 8. Creating structure and routine for my children was a challenge for me at first, but I found that having a loose schedule really helped. Here's what works for my family:

- Morning routine: We start our day with breakfast and some light exercise. After that, my kids get dressed and we spend 30 minutes doing something educational like reading or practicing math.

- Playtime: Once our learning time is up, we have free playtime for a few hours. My kids are free to do whatever they want during this time, whether that's playing outside, building with Legos, or doing crafts.

- Lunchtime: We have lunch at the same time every day to maintain consistency. I try to make sure my kids have a healthy, balanced meal.

- Afternoon routine: After lunch, my younger child takes a nap while my older child spends an hour doing some sort of structured activity like practicing an instrument or going to a martial arts class. Once the structured activity is done, we have more free playtime until dinner.

- Dinner and bedtime: We have dinner at the same time every day, then spend some family time together before bedtime. My kids go to bed at the same time every night to maintain consistency.

As for screen time, I try to limit it to an hour a day, and only after other activities have been completed. It's important to find what works best for your family and adjust the routine as needed. Good luck!

qbartoletti

Hi,

I'm a stay-at-home parent of two kids, aged 4 and 7, and creating a structured routine was a bit difficult in the beginning, but I found that it helped to involve my kids in the process. Here's what has worked for us:

- Morning routine: We start the day by having breakfast together, and then we all get dressed and ready for the day. We have a whiteboard that we use to write out our daily tasks, so my kids know what to expect.

- Structured learning time: We spend a couple of hours every morning doing structured learning, like reading, practicing math, or doing science experiments. My kids are always excited to learn something new, and I think it helps that they have a hand in choosing what we focus on.

- Free playtime: After structured learning, we have a couple of hours of free playtime. My kids are allowed to choose what they want to do during this time, whether it's playing outside, doing art projects, or building with Legos.

- Lunch and quiet time: We have lunch together at the same time every day, and after lunch, my younger child takes a nap while my older child has quiet time. This usually involves reading, drawing or playing on an iPad for a little while.

- Afternoon routine: Once quiet time is over, we have some more free playtime, and then we usually do an activity together, like baking cookies or doing a science experiment.

- Dinner and bedtime: We have dinner together every day, and then we spend some family time together before bedtime. My kids go to bed at the same time every night, and we have a set bedtime routine that we follow to keep things predictable.

As for screen time, we're pretty flexible with it, but we do try to limit it to only a few hours a week. Overall, I think involving my kids in the routine has made things easier for everyone, and it gives them a sense of control over their day.

hamill.yasmeen

Hi everyone,

I'm a stay-at-home parent to two kids ages 2 and 4, and I find that having a daily schedule helps a lot in maintaining a sense of structure and routine. Here are some of the things that work for us:

- Morning routine: We start the day by having breakfast together, and then we spend some time getting dressed and ready for the day. We have a dedicated play area, and I encourage my children to have independent play so I can complete any necessary tasks I might have.

- Structured learning time: We usually have structured learning time after breakfast, where we read books, practice numbers and letters, or do simple arts and crafts projects.

- Outdoor time: We try to get outside for some fresh air and outdoor time every day, even if it's just for a short amount of time. We go to the park, go for a walk or ride bikes whenever possible.

- Lunchtime and nap time: We have lunch at the same time every day, and then my younger one takes a nap while my older one has some quiet time. During quiet time, my older one usually looks at books or does a puzzle.

- Afternoon routine: Once quiet time is over, I encourage my kids to have some independent playtime before we complete some chores together or do another structured activity.

- Dinner and bedtime: We try to have dinner together as a family, and then we have bath time, stories and bedtime routine for the kids.

In terms of screen time, we try to limit it to an hour or less each day, as too much screen time can disrupt the schedule and structure.

It's important to remember that each child is different, so what works for us may not work for everyone. However, having some kind of routine that includes time for play, learning, and rest has been beneficial for our family.

hans.robel

Hello,

As a stay-at-home mom of three kids, aged 2, 5, and 7, having a structured routine has been essential in keeping everyone on track during the day. Here are some things that have worked for us:

- Morning routine: We start our day with breakfast and getting dressed for the day. After that, my older kids spend about an hour doing independent reading or schoolwork while I work on breakfast and clean up from the morning.

- Structured learning time: We have a set time each day for structured learning, which includes reading, writing, and math work for about two hours a day. I found that doing this early in the day works best for my kids.

- Outdoor time: We try to go outside for at least an hour every day. We go for walks, bike rides, or play in the backyard.

- Lunchtime and nap time: After structured learning, we have lunch together and then my younger child takes a nap while my older kids have some quiet time. They can read, do puzzles or play with quiet toys.

- Afternoon routine: Once quiet time is over, we either have free playtime or do a structured activity. Oftentimes, this includes baking or doing an art project together.

- Dinner and bedtime: We have dinner together as a family, and then we spend some time together before starting the bedtime routine.

In terms of screen time, we try to limit it to an hour a day and only after other activities have been completed.

Having structure and routine for our family has helped immensely in keeping everyone organized and happy throughout the day. It's important to be flexible and adjust the routine to fit everyone's needs, but having a daily schedule has been beneficial for our family.

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