Jun 22

RoutineTalk: For School-Age Children

2006 at 11:24 am   |   by Carolyn Mahaney Filed under Motherhood | Parenting Young Children

At the beginning of every school year and at the start of every summer holiday, I create a new schedule for Chad. Then I sit down with him and fully explain the new plan, answer all his questions, and consider any reasonable requests for modification. The schedule is ready to go. Almost. For I’ve learned that what looks good on paper doesn’t always work in real life. Some fine-tuning is required before the schedule starts to work efficiently.

“Efficiently” typically only lasts for a couple of weeks, before more conversation is needed. The schedule is tweaked where necessary and we’re back on track. Just when things are running smoothly a holiday or vacation arrives and wipes out the schedule completely. We’re back to square one.

So you may be wondering: Is a schedule really worth all the time and effort?

Yes! For many reasons. But perhaps most importantly, it cuts down on nagging. It prods on my behalf. The schedule tells Chad exactly what he needs to do, when he needs to do it, and how long it should take to complete. As the mother of a teenage son, anything that minimizes continual reminders and non-stop commands is well worth the effort. For less nagging means there is more time for laughter, affection and special mother-son conversations.

So, instead of constant nagging, let your schedule do the talking. By now, I hope you know that it’s just a suggestion.