In this post we are talking about how to create Printable Routine Charts for Kids and all the different types there are.
Printable routine charts can be a mommy’s best friends. They are easy visual reminder for kids to not just carry out their daily responsibilities, but it also helps them feel calm and confident in their capabilities.
What are everyday routines and why are they important?
An everyday routine is a sequence of things that we do in a day. From getting up in the morning to the time we go to bed, for sure there are many things like eating, studying, playing and chores – that we all do. There is definitely a time and sequence of how you do it too. That is your routine.
The reason why routines are important is because they help us in being productive and consistent in doing the things we have to do. When we know what we have to do and when we are doing it regularly, it becomes a habit. It’s the good habits that make our life easier.
Consistent routines help children know what to expect in their day. It gives them more control over their day to day activities – especially when they are little and unable to understand time.
Daily Routine Charts for Kids
The best way to help our children learn about their daily routine is through routine charts. It is a visual reminder and it is one of the best form of accountability and motivation.
But many parents shy away from creating a daily routine charts for kids not knowing how it can be useful to their young toddler or preschooler. The truth is (and my experience) whether you have a toddler or a teenager, a routine chart can actually help your child build the daily good habits that they need in their daily life.
Whether your child is school going or homeschooled – whether online or in person, a chart can actually help you both. Kids behave better, are more responsible and more willing to cooperate with you with a routine chart.
The problem however is that, many parents don’t know how to create an ideal routine chart. So, in this post, I will be talking about everything you need to know and also a done for you solution.
Types of routines
There are many different types of routines a person can have. It is not possible for anyone to have one same routine all through the year. So based on the time of the day, your season of life and your children’s ages, you may have different routine. Some ways we can differentiate between routines is as follows.
Based on your daily habits of how you get up and go about your work, you may have different routines through out the day. These smaller routines are also called as your daily rhythms. All these rhythms together may make up your ideal day routine. For example:
- Morning routine – a routine of how you get up and get started in your day.
- Afternoon routine – your daily habits in the afternoon.
- Bedtime routine – the sequence of your bedtime habits
- Cleaning routine – a routine of how you clean your home
- Back from school routine – the sequence of things you do on returning from school.
Routines based on time of year
Now based on how you stack your smaller daily rhythms, you may be able to change your routine during the different parts or seasons of the year. For example, your morning routine during the Summer holidays may be very different from the morning routine when the kids are going to school in person or when they are studying online.
For example, your routine may change based on your child’s schooling year.
Routines based on children’s age
Also, it may change based on your child’s age. For example: A toddler who is potty training will have a different routine compared to a preschooler. So based on age, you may have:
- Baby routines
- Toddler routines
- Preschooler routines
- School aged children routine
- Older children’s routines
- Teenager routine
- Mom routine
Routines based on your Family Rules
Some times, we have to create additional routines in our homes to teach our children family rules and good manners. I like to make these as a form of routine charts too. Because there may be a sequence of how you do these things in your home or there may be certain conditions that a child needs to meet for these activities. Some of these routines may have become your family’s rules over time.
Let me give you some example to understand what I mean:
- Screen time Rules – a set of things you must do in order before you can have technology.
- Quiet Time Rules – your habits in the afternoon in place of nap time.
- Clean up Routine – how you clean your room
Creating routine charts for such things help in minimizing conflict with children and also in establishing family rules. When children know when they are supposed to do things and how they are to do it, it helps them in agreeing to cooperate with us. If the rules are written, they become much more clearer.
How to create a Routine Chart
I get many questions from parents who tell me that they have a routine for their child but it is no longer working for them. They also tell me how they can help their children follow the routine without having to nag them all the time.
So, let’s talk about how to create a routine chart that is perfect for your child and family.But before we get into creating routine charts for kids, we need to understand the many mistakes that parents make.
5 Mistakes to avoid while creating routines for kids
These mistakes that I am talking about below are those that I have come across quite frequently. Some of these I have seen in my own personal life with my own kids while many are those that I have helped solve for my readers.
- Mistake #1: Not understanding the difference between Routine and Schedule
- Mistake #2: Filling your day with too many activities
- Mistake #3: Not understanding sleep patterns and energy levels.
- Mistake #4: Age un-appropriate responsibilities and expectations
- Mistake #5: Not following through with the routine.
Difference between Routine and Schedule:
One of the biggest mistake parents make when they create a routine chart is writing timings on it. There is a difference between a routine and a schedule and most parents mistake one for the other.
A routine is a sequence of habits that you daily – one after the other. A schedule is a time table of your daily routines. Meaning to say, a schedule has time on it. A routine chart is just your habits.
A schedule looks like this:
- Wake up – 7am
- Breakfast – 7.30am
- Bus comes – 8.30 am
- School – 9.30am to noon
- Lunch – 2pm
A routine looks likes this:
- brush your teeth
- make your bed
- get dressed
- come down for breakfast
- pack your bag
- off to school
Can you see the difference? A schedule tells you when you have to do things. A routine tells you how to do those things.
What should you add to your Routine Chart?
The golden rule in creating routine charts for kids is to only add stuff that is important. Look here, you are creating a routine chart that is for our kids to learn daily habits from, so it is essential that you have just the habits that you want them to master.
The best way to make it easy for children to enjoy their routine charts and look forward to them is to have as less things as possible and to divide their day into different rhythms.
When you have a morning, afternoon and evening routine for kids, it becomes easier for them to follow the rhythm. Make sure, of course, that you add just the essential habits.
The importance of understanding Sleep Patterns and Energy Levels
So many parents make this mistake of trying to tweak their children’s routines to their own. They want their kids to sleep in late and wake up late. Look here. This is NOT happening. It is important to understand children’s sleep habits and energy levels.
We are all born with an internal sleep clock that helps us rise with the sun and feel sleepy as teh sun goes down. Just like the way animals and birds in the wild wake up with the sun and feel the need to nap in the hot sun and then sleep when the moon comes up, exactly like this, we humans have this same natural clock. When we try to change these sleep and wake habits is when the problem arises.
Tweaking your children’s bedtime routine to try to make them sleep later than their natural sleep time and waking them much later than when they are meant to wake up will just jeopardies their entire natural sleep clocks and energy levels. Don’t do this!
Responsibilities and age appropriate chores for kids.
Your child however small they may be, they can do things for themselves. from the age of 7 months, a child can hold there spoon. Toddlers love to carry things around the home and pull and push, pour and sort. When we give our children the opportunity to do things, we train them to be independent. That is our purpose in motherhood – to train children to be independent, confident and self-sufficient.
Routines for kids and chores should go hand in hand. It is one of the best ways to train the kids to feel empowered, in-control and capable of doing things for themselves.
Recommended reading: Age appropriate chores for kids.
Accountability charts for kids
Accountability Charts are a great way to motivate our children to try and do what is expected of them. Whether it is for toilet training or for doing their daily chores, Accountability Charts can be a great tool.
What are Accountability Charts? They are just Star Charts and rewards. We help them reward good behavior in themselves and encourage it.
Recommended reading: Star Charts for Kids.
Printable Routine Charts for Kids
Now that you understand what Routine charts for kids are and how to create your own, here’s an example of what an routine chart for kids looks like.
Would you like a done for you solution? This routine chart that you see above is part of the Printable Routine Charts and Rules for Kids pack.
It has everything you need to create a daily routine for your child, no matter whether it is school days or holidays! We know that having a routine for your child helps them see what’s coming in their day and how they can help. It is the best way to win their cooperation!
But just a routine is not enough! Children need rhythms, rules and responsibilities. It builds our children’s confidence and self reliance while also teaching them that a family that works together, grows closer together.
This pack contains 8 different routines, Accountability charts and examples of Family rules that every child must know. So whether your child is at home or goes to school, they will know what’s expected of them. It’s their morning, afternoon and evening routines… all done for you!
These routines are proven to help you teach your children how to control screen time and manage their nap time. It encourages good manners and helps you prevent bad behavior.
No more power struggles, nagging or repeating all day long. It works from toddlers to elementary aged kids… and beyond! Teaching healthy everyday habits helps your children have good habits for life!
What is inside the Daily Routine Charts pack
The Printable Routine and Rules for Kids pack contains.
- Five different type of schedules – School, Summer, homeschool and two different types of online schooling schedules.
- 5 Different type of Morning Routine Charts: Teaches your child to independently get ready and start the day right.
- 5 Different type of Bedtime Routine Charts : Create peace and promotes healthy sleep habits.
- 5 Types of Afternoon Routines: Help children rest, play and encourages creativity.
- Daily Score Charts: Provides accountability and motivation for children to track their progress. (21 different types!!)
- Screen time Rules Charts: Teach your child how to minimize screen time and help them set goals to manage it themselves.
- Quiet time Rules Chart: Teach your child how to relax and refresh everyday.
- Family Rules Chart: Teach your child your family values and what good behavior and manners looks like.
You can just download, print and stick them on a wall or place them in a frame!
Easy Step by Step Guide for Use:
- Download your digital file from your email.
- Print the routine cards using your home printer on regular paper or card stock.
- Frame your routines, Stick them on the fridge or on a wall. Laminate if desired.
- Offer your child a dry erase marker, sticker or magnets to mark their progress.
Here is what people who have bought our pack say
Your routines work for my son. They are helping me manage all our activities through the day. Thank you so much.Sidrah// Mom of 2.5 year old
I was overwhelmed with my role as a wife and mother of 3 under 7. My eldest was always demanding me things. I was always saying No to her. I bought your routine charts for her. I can’t believe the transformation! Thank you.Brittany// Mom of 4 under 4
I purchased your routines pack. I have 3 children under 4 and another one coming. Your charts are amazing! They really work! Your rules have been a game changer in my household! There is no nagging or reminding again. They just do it.Umme// Mom of 2 children