How often do you find yourself telling your kids to hurry up or reminding them of what time it is? Time management isn’t a skill that people are naturally born with. Instead, it is learned in a series of lessons that eventually pay off when you no longer feel like you are herding a bunch of dawdlers. Teaching your children time management skills is easily incorporated into your lifestyle when you use these strategies.
Start Teaching Them Young
As with most skills, your kids will do better if you begin these lessons early in life. A toddler or preschooler can practice doing simple tasks such as taking a toy to their room within a timely manner. As your child grows, you can make the lessons more difficult. By the time that your child is school-aged, they should be able to determine when to start a chore so that they are finished by a certain time. For example, they might want to begin unloading the dishwasher with enough time to also get their homework done.
Make Tracking Time Exciting
Child-friendly organizational tools are available that can make your child fall in love with tracking time. Look for calendars with pictures that appeal to your child. You can then pick out markers and stickers that they can use to add events to their new calendar. Helping your child track the days to an upcoming special event makes it more fun to learn how about time.
Teach Them How to Measure Time
By now, you probably know about what a minute feels like, but this is a foreign concept to young children. You can use timers to help your child see how much they can accomplish in a set amount of time. Turning cleaning up or getting dressed into a race against the clock gets your child excited about learning more about how long things take to accomplish.
Remember that it takes time for children to learn how long a minute lasts or how to organize their plans to fit a schedule. Continue to offer gentle reminders as they learn and be patient. Soon, you might even find your child reminding you that they need to start getting ready to be at their sports practice or school by a specific time.