10 Ways to Master the Morning Madness

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Practical Strategies for Parents to Support Early Years' Morning Routines

Mastering the Morning Madness

As any parent knows, mornings with young children can often resemble a chaotic symphony. From waking up sleepyheads to coaxing them into getting dressed, the morning routine in the early years can be a real challenge. However, fear not! With a combination of patience, organization, and a sprinkle of creativity, parents can turn the morning madness into a smoother, more enjoyable experience for both themselves and their little ones. In this blog post, we’ll explore practical strategies to make your early mornings a breeze.

1. Establish a Consistent Sleep Schedule

The foundation for a successful morning routine begins the night before. Ensure your child gets enough sleep by establishing a consistent bedtime routine. A well-rested child is more likely to wake up in a good mood and be cooperative during the morning routine. Set a realistic bedtime that allows for the recommended hours of sleep for your child’s age and stick to it as closely as possible.

2. Create a Visual Morning Routine Chart

Create a Visual Morning Routine Chart

Children thrive on routine and predictability. A visual morning routine chart is an excellent way to provide structure and help your child understand the sequence of tasks they need to complete each morning. Use pictures or simple drawings to represent activities like waking up, getting dressed, brushing teeth, and having breakfast. Display the chart in a prominent place and encourage your child to check off each task as they complete it.

3. Involve Your Child in Decision-Making

Involve Your Child in Decision-Making

Empower your child by involving them in decision-making aspects of the morning routine. Allow them to choose their outfit the night before or decide what they want for breakfast. Giving them a sense of control over certain aspects can reduce resistance and make them more willing participants in the morning activities.

4. Wake Up Before Your Child

Waking up a little earlier than your child can give you a head start on the day and allow you to prepare for the morning routine without feeling rushed. Use this time to organize breakfast, set out clothes, and gather any items needed for the day. Starting the day with a calm and collected parent can positively influence the atmosphere in the household.

5. Turn Routine into Fun

Turn Routine into Fun

Make the morning routine enjoyable by turning tasks into games or incorporating playful elements. For example, create a toothbrushing song or have a “race” to see who can get dressed the fastest. Adding an element of fun can turn mundane tasks into engaging activities that your child looks forward to.

6. Implement a Reward System

Star Chart

Introduce a simple reward system to motivate your child to complete their morning routine. Create a sticker chart, and let them place a sticker for each successfully completed task. Once they reach a certain number of stickers, reward them with a small treat or a special privilege. This positive reinforcement can make the morning routine more appealing and help establish good habits.

7. Streamline Clothing Choices

Avoid morning wardrobe battles by organizing your child’s clothing the night before. Lay out the next day’s outfit, including socks and shoes, in an easily accessible place. This eliminates the need for time-consuming decisions in the morning and allows your child to get dressed independently.

8. Make Breakfast a Priority

A nutritious breakfast is essential for your child’s well-being and concentration throughout the day. Simplify the morning routine by preparing breakfast items in advance or choosing quick and healthy options. Encourage your child to participate in making simple breakfasts like yogurt parfaits or whole grain toast with toppings.

9. Set Realistic Time Frames

Be mindful of the time it takes for your child to complete each task in their morning routine. Establish realistic time frames for each activity, allowing for a buffer in case of delays. This helps create a more relaxed atmosphere and reduces stress for both you and your child.

10. Model a Positive Attitude

Model a Positive Attitude

Children are highly perceptive and often mirror the attitudes and emotions of those around them. Approach the morning routine with a positive attitude, and your child is more likely to follow suit. Use encouraging words, celebrate small victories, and maintain a calm demeanor, even in the face of challenges.

Occupational Therapy at Transform Life

In conclusion, mastering the morning routine in the early years requires a combination of planning, consistency, and a touch of creativity. By establishing a consistent sleep schedule, creating visual routines, involving your child in decision-making, and making tasks enjoyable, you can transform chaotic mornings into smooth, enjoyable experiences for both you and your little one. Implementing these practical strategies will not only make the morning routine more manageable but also set a positive tone for the rest of the day. Occupational Therapists play a vital role in supporting parents in mastering the morning routine.

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Transform Life is a NDIS registered organisation that provides support for your autistic child, as well as support to you as a parent to best navigate the challenges your child and family face on a daily basis.

Book your FREE consult with an experienced Therapist at Transform Life to explore how OT can support you and your family.


Transform Life is an Australian owned provider specialising in evidence based therapeutic support including Positive Behaviour Support, Occupational Therapy, Psychology, Speech Therapy and Behavioural Interventions helping transform lives and families across Australia.

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