From speaking to hundreds of parents, the biggest problem that most parents have at home, especially during the long school holidays, is keeping kids mentally and physically engaged when they’re out of routine.
When I was 8 years old, my father told me to take a simple A4 sheet of paper and list out all the things I wanted to do each day during my school holidays and then put check boxes beside each of them. The paper was stuck on my bedroom wall, so I would see it each morning. I also added stickers and drawings on the paper to keep me motivated. This was my daily routine. The routine consisted of my martial arts training program, a few chores and a creative craft project.
Looking back today, it was by ticking off the boxes on those sheets of paper that helped build my discipline, habits and focus to now be inducted into a martial arts hall of fame, write a best-selling book and start my own company that impacts over 90,000 people around the world.
Today, I am close friends with many world champion athletes, successful entrepreneurs and high-level performers, and they all attribute their success to a strong work ethic and discipline, built from a young age.
Kids thrive on routine. But the problem is our society has a culture of slowing down, winding down and allowing the kids to ease off once the school year ends. A child’s brain needs constant engagement, challenge and stimulation.
If kids fall out of routine:
- They form the habits of laziness, procrastination and unproductivity
- They have more difficulty getting motivated and focused, especially during back to school period
- They fall to the trap of distractions like games, TV and their iPads.
If kids have a set routine to follow:
- They build self-discipline, self-confidence, improve focus and strengthen their developing minds
- They have the opportunity to work towards building something that they are proud of
- Routines can help promote a feeling of safety in stressful situations or during difficult stages of development, such as puberty.
4 EASY STEPS TO CREATE A ROUTINE FOR YOUR CHILDREN
(WITH PRINTABLE TEMPLATE DONE FOR YOU)
We understand how difficult it is to juggle the many things as a parent, so we’ve designed a printable template for you to begin implementing a daily routine for your children. Click on the links below to download.
STEP 1: Print out the Training Program Template and The Daily Routine Chart printable downloads
STEP 2: Grab some coloured textas or pencils (Colour increases engagement and retention)
STEP 3: Sit down with your children and have them identify 10 fundamental things that they practice in class. And 5 progressions they are currently working on. Here’s a sample Training Program for you:
- Push Ups x 10
- Sit Ups x 10
- Squats x 10
- Tuck Jumps x 10
- Front Kicks x 10
- Roundhouse Kicks x 10
- Jump Kicks x 10
- Straight Punches x 50
- Blocks x 10
- Stretching x 5 min
STEP 4: Next, have your children fill out the Daily Routine Chart. We’ve got 10 tasks that they can fill, and simply tick off each day. Here’s an example for you:
- Brush my teeth
- Make my bed
- Complete my training program
- Play outside
- Create an arts project
- Help mum/dad with a house chore
- Do some homework
- Write in a diary
- Put toys away
- Say “I love you” to my family and give them a hug
Done! Simply stick it on the wall where they can see it everyday!
A FEW EXTRA TIPS:
Your child will lose motivation and focus by day 2 of following this. It’s not their fault. So to keep your children motivated throughout the whole school holidays, here are a few tips:
- EMOTIONALLY SET IT UP PROPERLY: On the first day with alot of enthusiasm and fun. Give your children ownership of this by allowing them to choose the tasks, where to stick the paper, and also to design the paper.
- ENTHUSIASM: Remind your children each morning with enthusiasm, as if reminding them to play. Do not use a “lecture” tone.
- CREATE MOMENTUM: Be with them to tick off 2-3 tasks at the beginning of each day to create momentum.
- REVIEW: Always review the checklist each night with your children.
- PRAISE: Most importantly, remember to give plenty of praise and encouragement when they tick off a task
Thank you for being on this journey to empower your children to become extraordinary. Fee free to leave a comment or question in the comments section below.