Now that we are parents of two kids (can’t believe it!), the time we spent with each kid is limited. We try to make sure each kid gets their 1×1 attention everyday. Jeev is also at an age (3.5 years old) when we need to spend more time teaching him habits and basic skills. So we have a set routine for Jeev and we are slowly teaching him to do some of his works independently.
Although it’s not set in stone, the below schedule has been working well for us at this phase of our lives.
Jeev wakes up around 7 AM and gets ready with little help from us. We still brush his teeth as we think the kiddo is still too young to brush well on his own. Once he is brushed, he will have his breakfast on his table. Again, I try to keep the right portion for him to finish well without feeling like he cannot finish his food (we went through a phase on that). After that, he drinks fruit juice if he wants before he is off to school.
As soon as the kids are back home from school, we change clothes and sit for dinner. In the past few months, we have been eating dinner as early as 5.30 PM and it’s been working well (Around 7.30 PM, we munch some fruits and snacks before we hit the bed). We all sit together and eat our dinner. It’s a dedicated family time and no one is allowed. After dinner, Jeev and I print our lessons for the day and go over the lessons. I try to introduce him at least two activities in a day.Typically the session goes for 30-45 minutes and I make it as fun as possible. He doesn’t enjoy all the lessons the same way everyday. For example, I tried to introduce him reading and he doesn’t really enjoy much of it. So, we are taking a break on that. Some days he wants to do lessons until he goes to bed and some days and I can see that the boy wants to do something else. Our sessions vary based on his interest. However, I make it a point to do activities every single day.
Once the lessons are done, he takes bath and off to play on his own. Some days, we play together / some days we go directly to read books. It depends on his mood on that day.
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We also go to the library once every 10 days and get new books. Currently, one of his favorite books is pictures and details of sea animals. We read the book, act like a sea animal and talk about their features/habits. It’s fun guys, even for adults 🙂
In summer, we used to go for walking right after dinner. Since the weather is a little chilly lately, no more walking and we are home bound most of the evenings.
Planning the weekends:
The only way we take our kids out during weekends is if we plan early. I’m worst at last minute planning, so I plan at least 2 weeks early and block our calendars. That way, I know what to expect when the weekend arrives. For example, we have a couple of kids shows in the library this Saturday. I need to get the tickets on Saturday morning for the show. All these details went on the calendar last week itself.
If Meera had a late nap in school, she would join us or Hubby will play will her until we finish the lessons. I have a separate set of activities for her that I do as well. , Also she sleeps early and I spend the rest of the evening exclusively for Jeev. None of the household work or electronics are touched until the kids go to bed.
We researched so much about it and talked to his teacher a few times before we finalized the below list of independent works for him. These are the things Jeev does independently and we jump in whenever he needs help, but not without him trying first:
- Put the plates away after he finishes the meal
- Put the clothes in laundry basket after he changes dress
- Dress himself up (little help from us when needed)
- Put/remove shoes/shocks and put them in place
- Clean up the toys after he is done playing. We help him when necessary. We have this fun song we sing every time we clean up: clean up! clean up! everybody clean up!
- Put things back in place once we finish using it – it’s applicable to the whole family. Once I was rushing to feed Meera after entering the house and kept my winter coat on the chair itself. You guys, Jeev called me out. Probably not a big deal. But it was a proud moment for this mom 🙂
Below is a snapshot of our current week lessons:
I have a similar schedule for Meera (11 months old) with just 1 activity a day. The goal is to create a habit of leaning and make the whole experience as fun as possible. With Jeev, we print the activities together. So he is involved from start to finish and loves the whole process so much that some days he wants to do lessons even before our dinner time.
Keep in mind, it’s not always rosy as it sounds. There are days when we decided to stop early as the kid is too distracted or wants to do other things. Some days he spends a good 30 minutes watching TV and some days more. Although we follow this schedule every day, we try to keep our minds open for any changes/improvements.
Do you guys follow any schedule for your kids? Please do share. I hope to learn from you.