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Quick and dirty parenting tips: how to establish a routine with your kids in a fun way

Carlotta Cerri

Oliver was 30 months when we did this, and he was having a hard time with a major change at his Montessori school: he was moving from the infant community (18 months-3 years) to Children’s House (3-6years).

Our problem

Every morning it was a struggle to leave the house, and the problem always started when it was time to put clothes on after playing. He would get upset and say he doesn’t want to go to school.

Our solution

Oliver and I together made a poster of our Morning Routine (in less than half an hour).

Making your own is very quick and easy:

  • Take pictures of your child doing his morning activities
  • Print them (we have this photo printer and love it!)
  • Glue them onto the poster in order (have your child glue them, to get him involved)
  • Hang it on the wall/door.
  • Done! ✔️

For some extra fancy, you can also:

  • Write captions (ask your child what to write)
  • Write numbers (especially if your child knows/is learning numbers)
  • Incorporated drawings (we used some action cards that were sitting in my hobby drawer).

Why it works 👍🏻

The poster becomes a silent authority that distracts the child and prevents power struggles: when you encounter an obstacle, ie. “I don’t want to dress” or “I want to play first”, you can say: “mmm, let’s go see what our poster says” and most likely your child will take it as a game and forget about the problem.

Keep in mind 💡

For children who don’t yet grasp the concept of time, it’s challenging to remember “this morning we struggle getting ready, mummy got upset and we were very late” or talk about how “tomorrow let’s put on our clothes before we have breakfast so you can play longer”.

Talking is important, but sometimes it’s not enough—especially in the heat of the moment or to avoid power struggles: the poster of the Morning Routine is a quick and dirty tip to help communication, and can be created to help establish any routine.

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