Getting ready for school is stressful enough, but when greeted with whiny children that complain each morning it makes caring nannies and au pairs want to pull their hair out. Some kids just can't get up in the morning. Some don't function well when they first wake up. Some are tired from not getting enough sleep. Some are simply not a "morning person."
Here are some thoughts and suggestions for changing your morning moods:
1. Don't serve children breakfast immediately. Wait until kids are dressed, beds made, washed, and ready to talk.
2. Watch your pace. A child who feels rushed may resist by getting slower. Nagging, moaning, and screaming might get them out the door now, but tomorrow morning, they will be complaining again.
3. Don't force the children to talk. Nannies and au pairs may be alert and wide awake, but don't force kids to be peppy immediately after waking up.
4. Allow more time. Wake kids up earlier, or set their alarm clock for 10 or 20 minutes earlier.
5. Get it done the night before. Organize the backpacks, jackets, homework, sports supplies, and put them near the door or, better, in the car. Pack lunches and choose clothes before they go to sleep.
6. Get into a rhythm and routine so children can operate on cruise control without having to think.
7. Don't forget the positive reinforcement. When children have a better morning, mention it. Bring it up after school.
What are your tips for a good morning with your charges?