Today’s technology leaves us all over stimulated and exhausted but what effects does it have on our children? Let’s face it, the modern child is overbooked, overplayed and over stimulated! As parents, we have little control as to how our children are expected to learn and balance. We can minimize screen time but often your child is required to be in front of a screen for their homework. We have to find new ways to create balance for our children! Here are some of the best tips for you to juggle all of these activities and make sure our child is well fed while maintaining good grades:
- Master Schedule: Have your schedule in one area of the house, easily accessible with everything on it. It is easy to accidentally double book or miss an activity because it was written on a different calendar, phone or little scrap piece of paper. Having a family calendar in the kitchen on display or a synced calendar on an app such as the Google calendar app will streamline everything and avoid those slip ups by consistently adding every event to one single location.
- Meal Plan: A part of my Sunday is meal planning. I look at the entire family schedule and based on the activities for that day I figure out what days are pizza, crockpot or full-on family dinner. This is a great way to stay sane as well as staying on budget. Who doesn’t like to save money and time? For some fun crockpot ideas check out this great resource from thirtyhandmadedays!
- Choose Your Activities Wisely: At the beginning of each season, pick some fun activities that you can do with your kids and schedule them in between the chaotic weeks of running around. Make sure you schedule at least half hour for family meal time – there’s nothing important than eating together when we can! Keep the number of activities to one active sport and one mental challenge like music lessons or robotics club to help create a well rounded child. Check out Valotta Studios for plenty of great music education opportunities!
- Carpool: They always say “it takes a village to raise a child”. Don’t be afraid to set a schedule with parents that live in the same area as you so you can take turns driving. This will help you and chances are the other parents could use the extra time as well. Make sure to add this time to your master schedule.
- Schedule Projects & Big Tests: Here is where that Master Schedule comes back to haunt you! A lot of grades have set tests days. Every Friday is spelling and every 2 weeks a big project is due… bleh. While we may hate the fact that our children have so many projects and big tests, it’s important to accomplish these with the minimum amount of stress for your children. Mark them in advance on your Master Schedule so nothing falls through the cracks! Complete big projects on weekends so it doesn’t create a crying meltdown the night before it’s due. Start studying for tests earlier in the week when you know you have a slower activity night. Your Master Schedule is your best friend!
- Structured Homework Time: Homework can be such a hassle for family and it doesn’t have to be. Set up a time structure based on roughly how much time your child usually spends on homework and break it down by subject area. You might want to split up the time with a snack in the middle so it doesn’t bog down your children. If structured homework time leads to meltdowns and unaccomplished work, weekly tutoring might be a good fit for you! Your tutor will help your child with their problem subjects while teaching them good and efficient study skills to make homework time less scary! Check out Valotta Studios Tutoring for one-on-one, individualized homework help to ensure your child is getting the most out of the homework with the least amount of time.