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What do your children do between getting up, breakfast & before school starts....


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I'm trying to get my children trained that they are not to play with toys. I'm getting ready to type out a list of what they must do, what they can do after they are done.

 

It includes,

Wake up, get dressed, make bed, eat breakfast, brush teeth.

But, they wake up and I'm not ready to make them breakfast, so it needs to be

wake up, make your bed, __________quietly (read, I've also got some Highlights and High Five (youngest magazine that grandpa got him) or what are some quiet things that you allow?

 

Then we eat breakfast, get dressed, brush teeth & start school.

 

Any suggestions?

 

I hope all of that made sense. Dh just does not want them playing, but often I still find my boys with, their beds not made, they are on the floor with Legos and they are being slightly noisy (not always but sometimes)

 

Thanks,

Kristine

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My kids have a morning routine of:

Get up

Get dressed

Make beds

Tidy room

Tend to dirty clothes

 

Then they may proceed downstairs where Eldest now makes breakfast after tending to his other chores. (takes care of trash and will change the 'baby') The others have other chores to do..empty dishwasher/put away dishes, tidy living areas, help tend to baby, prepare table for breakfast.

 

Immediately following breakfast the older two go brush their teeth then down to start on school work. The 6 yr old must first sweep the floor..if he goes up to brush his teeth first, the sweeping won't happen ;) Besides, too many in the bathroom leads to disaster LOL

 

Before we started on this more chore oriented routine they were allowed to read quietly in the living room..they still had to be up and dressed, beds made..until mom was up and breakfast was ready. Then I would sometimes assign little jobs for them to do. But I expect them to be rather independent now..and it's working quite well.

 

Eldest took on the task of fixing breakfast every morning, all on his own. He would ask to help sometimes or I would ask him sometimes. But then he just took over. He's 10, btw. Fixes eggs, oatmeal or oatbran every morning for the 5 of them.

 

Our 'thing' here is that whether Eldest is making breakfast or I am..we fix breakfast, we serve breakfast. There will be no eating breakfast until X chores are finished. There will also be no waiting by the others for 'you' to complete your chores. We've had a few eat some cold eggs. That doesn't happen often. They don't like being left out. They enjoy having breakfast together...and warm LOL

And if they're especially lazy about it..their food may not be available by the time they get down there. That has only happened ONCE. It was taken impressively well. That child got their rear in gear the next day, I can tell ya that ;)

 

I don't know if I answered/helped any...but, there's what we do. My kids are 10, 8, 6, 4 and 2 (today!).

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Up

make beds

dressed in chore/outdoor clothes

breakfast

clean up dishes (load/unload dishwasher, wipe down counters)

animal chores (we have horses, chickens, and sheep so these are fairly messy chores)

showers (plus brush teeth)

dressed in school clothes

***generally by this time we either do lunch or a snack, depending on how quickly we got everything else done***

start laundry & set the roomba loose in a designated room (might as well get some more chores done while we're working on lessons)

School

Put away laundry; any other chores (we use the Motivated Moms chore planner)

 

They get to play and/or have leisure screen time when all the chores and lessons are done for the day. 3x/week they must spend extra time with the horses (grooming, riding/training) after lessons are finished.

 

That said, on holidays our schedule goes right out the window. :D

 

Quiet things that I allow when our schedule is not moving along at the regular pace:

 

Spelling cd (Calvert)

Online lessons (also Calvert)

Cosmeo (online educational site)

Any school reading or other independent school work

Rainbow Rock or Vroot Vroom math cd (Singapore Math; just started this!)

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They get up at 7.They are supposed to get dressed,oldest dd takes the dogs out and gives them fresh water,youngest dd feeds the cats and gives them fresh water.Then they eat breakfast.When I am home I have to strongly encourage (nag) them to get going on their chores because they usually take forever to get dressed.Oldest dd wants to sit and read and youngest wants to sit and stare at the tv for as long as possible.Both take at least 20 minutes to get dressed every morning.I don't think either child is a morning person.Their dad says it's a good thing they don't have to get on a school bus;they'd never be ready on time.

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Man, I must be one hippie mom or totally not with it... I don't require my kids to do anything except "get up, brush teeth, walk dog, feed other animals, make your own darned breakfast and leave mom alone until she calls school time".

 

Usually the tv goes on and they watch it while doing this stuff. We get up at 730, school at 9. I have my own routine I guess, which is I get up, open curtains in family room, say hello to my bird, turn off nightlight, "wake" turtles, fish, and hermit crabs and feed the turtles, then go wake kids.

 

This whole thing takes me 5 minutes. Youngest makes my coffee and that's it. :) I don't require "school" before school--that's just cruel. :)

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For us it's morning chores. For ds it goes:

 

Get up

Wash face (helps with the waking up part)

Get dressed

Make bed

Put anything that needs washing in the hamper

Feed and water inside kitties

Go outside with Dad to lend a hand with farm chores

If he isn't needed outside, then he can help make breakfast

Eat breakfast

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I, too, must be a hippie mom! My kid(s) also get up before me (there's NO WAY I am getting up at 6AM w/ my DD9!) Sometimes DD12 is up early, and other times I have to get her up (haven't gotten around to setting up the alarm clock she got for Christmas!). To lessen the daily nagging I made laminated cards that hang in their bathroom with the expected AM/PM activities ie: breakfast, teeth, wash face, get dressed & do cat chores before going on parent approved websites (Sara Bella, Webkinz, or Circle of Friends, which is a Pen Pal site) or watching TV. They use a dry erase marker to check off each item as they do it. They also know that if the dishwasher was run the night before and they empty it, Mom will be in a much better mood when she gets up! That's all they are expected to do.

 

Bear in mind that they have a mom who would rather read, sew, take a walk/bike ride or do pretty much anything (even mow the lawn!) rather than do housework, so I'm certainly not going to ask my kids to do that stuff while I'm still in bed! We all do those chores together in short bursts after schoolwork.

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Let's see, they get up, make their beds if they feel like it, make their own breakfast, put their dirty dishes in the dishwasher (unless it's clean in which case they unload it), get dressed, brush teeth and start school. If I'm not quite ready for whatever reason, they will start with something they don't need me for like their Spanish or reading.

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They get up and play quietly if there is time. Dh calls them for breakfast at about 8 a.m. After that, they get dressed and brush teeth and make beds, then do whatever until 9 when we start school. I can't see me making them do work while I am goofing off.

 

We are NOT morning people! (except for dh, but he is learning to live with the rest of us!)

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I've only got a 4 yo dd, and I am soooo not a morning person. She must play in her room until 8 o'clock and then she is allowed to come in and jump on our bed. Then I get up take a shower, unload dishwasher and get breakfast while she watches TV. I really can't function in the morning until I've had a shower and sat down to wake up for a few minutes. The tv keeps her occupied while I am coming out of my morning coma :p

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Man, I must be one hippie mom or totally not with it... I don't require my kids to do anything except "get up, brush teeth, walk dog, feed other animals, make your own darned breakfast and leave mom alone until she calls school time".

 

Usually the tv goes on and they watch it while doing this stuff. We get up at 730, school at 9. I have my own routine I guess, which is I get up, open curtains in family room, say hello to my bird, turn off nightlight, "wake" turtles, fish, and hermit crabs and feed the turtles, then go wake kids.

 

This whole thing takes me 5 minutes. Youngest makes my coffee and that's it. :) I don't require "school" before school--that's just cruel. :)

 

I'm with you, Toni.

 

That's one of the great things about hsing...we can get up and gently get ready for the day, KWIM? I nudged my dc so they'd be ready for Official School Stuff around 9, or if it was library or field trip day, I'd nudge a little more to be sure we'd be out of the house on time.

 

But heck...if they were up early enough to play, more power to 'em.

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Um, on a good day,when I'm on the ball, I get them up at 8, so there is no time for anything besides getting everyone ready for the day (eating, brushing, de-stinking, dressing) before we start school at 9. If anyone is up early, they can watch PBS Kids.

 

My kids must be quiet until 8 am (Mom is checking out the WTM boards and MUST NOT be disturbed!). Then they make their beds and get dressed. They watch t.v. or videos (each dc has an assigned day to choose what to watch- it's on the calendar so there are no arguments) while I shower and make breakfast. We have morning chores after breakfast until school time.

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We are not big morning people. Ds10 gets up at 7 to shower before me most mornings. Our water heater needs a break in between people. Some mornings he will get up really early (like 5) with his dad to play xbox before school since dh has to be at work around 6. Ds6 gets up at 7:15 for his turn in the bathroom. They both have to do basic hygeine stuff, make their beds, and feed the guinea pigs and fish, but that is not more than a few minutes work. We usually start school before breakfast because we all like to wake up a bit before eating. Breakfast is always light...toast and milk or juice, etc. We do not have broadcast tv (we watch shows on itunes, dvd, or streaming from the shows websites), so there is no temptation there. Video games are allowed before 8 as long as they are ready for school by 8:30 when I usually get up.

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My oldest boys like to sleep as long as possible. I wake them up after I'm am done exercising (7:15 AM). They come down, eat breakfast, go back up, wash up, get dressed, clean room, make bed, bring down laundry. They can hang out reading or chatting until school begins around 8:30 AM. We have a no electronics rule before school. They are also welcome to start school without me, but for some reason they never choose that option. :rolleyes:

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My kids are expected to play quietly when they get up. :)

 

My kids have their free time in the mornings. They play. They clean up after themselves. After lunch they hit the proverbial books and are done with schoolish things by 3pm.

 

We've always done it this way. Guess what? My almost 18yo son is respectful, prompt, intelligent and faithful to get to his part time job, as well as doing his coursework.

 

My 15yo dd is the same. My younger ones are still works in progress, but they are following along nicely.

 

I would encourage the original poster to be flexible with your children. If you don't get school going according to the clock, and if they've done their morning chores, then why can they not play until you're ready? That's the beauty and flexibility of homeschooling.

 

If they're loud and messy and crazy, that's another story.

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I wake up at 7:00, when DH brings my glass of milk up before he leaves for work. I watch the news, read my Bible and sometimes doze until 8:00 when I get dressed and go wake THEM. Getting them dressed is enough in the morning. I do not require them to make their beds (I too, do not make mine!). I try to have them downstairs by 8:30 for breakfast, then brush their teeth and wipe off their faces and 'go to' school. I do their hair during that get dressed time. THey have no free time before school. DD3 is the slowest eater so when dd6 is done she is told to go start her math. :p Such a fun mommy!

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I have to say our morning consists of doing your chores (getting dressed, make beds, brush teeth, breakfast dishes, etc) but otherwise they are allowed to play but no TV or video games. If the weather is nice, they go outside and play until school time.

 

My sons are young yet at 9 and 5. They are only young once and their time will come for responsibility.

 

Adrianne

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Well, if it were up to me, I'd just let them play, but dh has said no playing before school, so we go with what he says. Today I made a box of fun educational stuff that they can do before school. I'll change it up every week.

 

Thanks.

Kristine

 

And if it were up to me, I'd be showing this board to DH and telling him to back off. You AND those kids are going to burn out quickly and then what? He's going to blame homeschooling. Nope, no way. I'd be showing this to him real quick and we'd be having a much needed talk about expectations and burn out.

 

And, I WOULD win. :)

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Several mornings a week I am already up and gone a-tutoring before dd wakes up, but generally she reads, listens to music (quietly), draws, or plays (again, quietly). Because of my work schedule, we're now doing lessons in the afternoon, so she has a long stretch of time to herself in the morning.

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By the time my children were school-aged, they were making their own breakfasts. No need to wait for me.

 

I know, I know a lot of people that have their kids make their own breakfasts. We have a friend who has 10 children and her almost four year old will make his own pancakes :eek: I am not ready for my kids to have free reign in MY kitchen, I'm too picky about it, plus we eat a lot of homemade waffles, eggs and pancakes. Maybe I'll give it up, but for now, I like it this way. I make dh's breakfast every morning too. I love to cook/bake, so I do find it peaceful. I know, call me crazy! :D

 

Kristine

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I know, I know a lot of people that have their kids make their own breakfasts. We have a friend who has 10 children and her almost four year old will make his own pancakes :eek: I am not ready for my kids to have free reign in MY kitchen, I'm too picky about it, plus we eat a lot of homemade waffles, eggs and pancakes. Maybe I'll give it up, but for now, I like it this way. I make dh's breakfast every morning too. I love to cook/bake, so I do find it peaceful. I know, call me crazy! :D

 

Kristine

I used to be picky too. But I had to get over that if I wanted other things to happen (like my sons relieving me of a lot of responsibilities). Kids can make homemade waffles eggs and pancakes. Mine did.
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My kids enjoy sitting around in their pjs for a lot of the morning. Some mornings they do all of their school work in pjs. They frequently laugh that it is awesome they are home doing school work in pjs and can then go to the park while most of their friends have been dressed and at school for hours!

 

Obviously, we are a little slack in our morning routine! They do not make their own breakfast and I'm ok with that. Of course, they are just 5,6,&7.

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If they aren't up by 7:30 I wake them up. (If they get up earlier than that, they can read or play computer or whatever. They get dressed, make beds (they straighten up their room before they go to bed) and head to breakfast. They make their own, but I read to them during breakfast. I usually read a little after breakfast too, but my goal is to be starting school with teeth brushed by 8:30. Friday is jammy day and they can stay in their jammies as long as they want.

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I have a strict "no video games before school" rule, but other than that everything's free game.

 

I think you were quite creative to think of "educational quiet time" activities. If you keep lots of stuff in there (puzzles, coloring books, art supplies) and rotate it out all the time I bet your kiddoes will start to look forward to that period.

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Our morning routine goes something like this:

The kids watch tv or play on the computer until one of them (usually the little one that doesn't know better yet) wakes me then I turn off the tv and computer (for them) and get a big cup of coffee. We make breakfast and I start a morning read aloud while they eat then we do a memory time then morning chores and get dressed.

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We wake up, eat if they wish, brush teeth, and start school immediately. We don't tend to get dressed, but they are allowed to do that at any point they wish. Most days we all end up changing out of pjs at some point. Well, except for dd2. If we don't leave the house, she doesn't leave the pajamas!:D

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Also, I must be the only mom who never makes the kids make their beds... I don't even make my own! :) I don't require them to brush their hair either--just their teeth after breakfast. Dishes wait until after school.

 

wow, I really am weird. :)

 

That's exactly why I said they make their beds if they feel like it. It's not usually a requirement here although I have finally gotten in the habit of making my own in the past couple of years.

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The baby and the oldest both get up around 7:30 to 8. We all get up around that time because of that. School is around 9:30. If they get up, get dressed, eat breakfast, straighten room, make bed and brush teeth and it's not time or I'm not ready, they play or skateboard outside.

 

When they were younger they would be bears to start school with if I let them play first. They hated stopping their playing. After enough of it and reminding them to control their attitudes, it's not such a big deal anymore. Unless the oldest is really close to a new skateboard stunt. Then it's 'iffy'. :)

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My oldest used to get up early and often make breakfast for everyone, then wake us all up. She'd have a quick computer turn while doing that. I'd make breakfast (ok, brunch!) sometimes, if she didn't make breakfast. She did this on her own, not as an assigned chore.

 

Now that she's gone to ps for 10th this year, we have to take care of ourselves!

 

We've never done much in the way of chores before school (I do a few, but the kids do theirs later in the day). It's all I can do to get these two younger ones up by 8:00, so there isn't much time to do more than get dressed, and get your own breakfast (unless I'm up and really on the ball, but it's still more likely to be brunch than breakfast).

 

I've never allowed tv before school, except when they were little enough to not really be able to do much independent work (which is a low-stress way to start the day, IMHO). I always believed this was what PBS was for! Now, I usually assign a little reading for first thing to do in the am.

 

If I had a dh that worked from home (which I'm guessing might be the OP's situation, or maybe dh just wants them to 'work first, play later', which is not a bad idea to me), I would think the reading or listening to books on tape while coloring would be a good idea.

 

Or you could always just start school earlier. I sure would if mine were earlybirds - I like to grab 'em while they're alert! ;)

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I've finally decided that we just can't start school as early as I wanted to. I'm sill trying to figure out a good time for us to start. I guess I'm another hippie mom all my kids do is:

Wake up when they wake up (I'm finished with the dragging out of bed)

Make their beds

Get dressed

Make breakfast, older dd helps little ones if I'm busy

Brush teeth, comb hair, wash face

Start school!

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My two oldest are early risers so they do their morning chores, eat breakfast and then play together. We start school at 8:30 so they play right up to the starting time. Sometimes after an especially late night the middle child sleeps in so my oldest plays by himself or starts school early.

 

My youngest sleeps until I wake him up at 8:00am.

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LOL, I fall in the hippie department as well. I don't think my kids are actually awake when we start school. So all they do is drag themselves out of bed, and fall back asleep in the living room. I bribe them with hot chocolate and they slowly gain consciousness. It doesn't help that it is still very dark at 9:00 when we start school.

 

Meanwhile, as the only morning person in the whole family, I have been awake since 6:30 enjoying my coffee and quiet.

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"Meanwhile, as the only morning person in the whole family, I have been awake since 6:30 enjoying my coffee and quiet"

 

Quiet... that's what I stay up late at night for! I love it after everyone has gone to bed and it's just me at the computer, with the dog asleep at my feet! But this would also explain my sleep-in attitudes towards mornings!

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They get up around 7:30 and do their own thing until 8:45 when I expect them dressed and ready for breakfast then lessons start at 9 or 9:30.

 

I get up early to have my "alone time" and they generally spend the first hour of the day having their "alone time" -- keeps us from getting on each other's nerves.

 

I think Michelle T and GothicGirl are my cyber sisters.

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I feel kinda weird going through this thread.

 

Now, it's just not an issue cuz they are big. They choose to start their stuff early because the earlier you start, the earlier you finish.

 

However, when they were young? I'd ENCOURAGE outside time (well, *I* didn't have to encourage because they just thought that is where they should be).

 

I wouldn't encourage a kid to be quiet before school time. That seems counter-productive on a couple levels to me. It seems that the longer they are quiet before school, the harder it would be to be quiet (mouth, movement, etc) DURING school. Also, brain science wise, as well as child development wise if we're talking kids under 8, it is best to have some good "hard play" and/or "sensory play" before academics. We have always broken up our day to have a healthy body and brain-body connection.

 

Anyway, again, so not an issue here as of course teens are plenty capable to regulate their own stuff in order to do what is best for them and get things done. But if I had littles or young elementary aged kiddos again, mine would be the ones running with the dogs, jumping on the trampoline, riding trikes, doing playdough or sandbox play, etc at 7 or 8am.

 

Oh, I forgot a couple things...My kids are also absolutely starving when they wake so that is first on the list. They do have chores but bedmaking has never been one of them (though a neat room IS so....). And I'm REALLY surprised how many people get their days started quite late.

 

Oh and no one messes with momma until mom starts talking to others :)

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It's good that you honor your dh's wishes. Have you talked to him about what you'd like to try, though? That is in no way disrespectful. I have sat down with my own husband and talked about his wish that the kids get up early, get working right away, etc. When I talked to him about this I was calm and chose a good time to talk (like when the kids were in bed, and we were just snuggling). The thing I pointed out to him was that the kids are respectful, joyful, and when I tell them to do something, they do it. Their schoolwork is done fairly well... I still have to prod my 13yo son... but oh well, ya know ;-)

 

The sticking point came last summer when our 17yo had to get up and out of the house by 7am to go to Driver's Ed class. Even I had my doubts that he'd be able to do it. But my boy set his alarm clock, got up on time, was cheerful and faithful. He got it done. So the idea that one must teach the kids from toddler on to get up early and get to schoolwork didn't pan out. I have noticed this, too, with our 15yo dd. I know it's anecdotal at best, but it did really settle dh on the fact that the flexibility of schedule in homeschooling really was a benefit, not a detriment that was breeding laziness or anything like that.

 

Perhaps you could propose a test run, like 1 week of having unstructured play time before school time? You can get at your mom chores without the pressure of having to sit the kids down for school. For me it's very freeing to have the morning to catch up on my own things.

 

Just a thought.

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