Schedules. What do you think of when you hear that word? Your work schedule? Your class schedule? What about a toddler schedule? I know, I know it sounds crazy. How could you keep a toddler on a schedule when you can barely keep yourself on a schedule?
I have always thrived with schedules; from college, to my business, to daily task and chores. Maybe it’s a woman thing, maybe it’s an OCD thing (I have it, it’s not a joke); whatever it is, it works for me. My husband is super unorganized and very forgetful, implementing a schedule for him works. Keeping him on said schedule is a whole other topic of discussion! So, why not implement a toddler schedule?
When my son was an infant, he basically just went along with my own schedule. Whenever I decided to I could wear him, put him in a bouncer, put him in a baby swing, put him in his crib to play. Now, I would be crazy to try any of those things, but I digress.
My *idea* of a perfect toddler schedule:
9:00 AM: Wake up (Yes, my son sleeps in until 9:00 AM. Yes, I know I am blessed.)
9:30 AM: Eat breakfast – I normally would have already had my breakfast prior so I use this time to answer emails from clients or blog!
10:00 AM: Sensory play in high chair – while he is playing with some trains or sorting his Cheerios, I clean up breakfast and complete other small tasks.
10:30 AM: Errands – this is usually the time where we run to Publix or Target, maybe even the park if the weather is nice.
12:30 PM: Lunch & Communication Activities – While he eats his lunch, I read him a short book or practice the Alphabet. Sometimes I will also scoot his high chair to the fridge where we have animal and color magnets, so we can practice our word associations.
1:00 PM: NAPTIME! (Mama’s favorite time, of course) – During this time I
clean breathe. Really though, I use nap time to blog some more, edit client’s galleries, catch up on emails, clean etc. My little man usually naps for 2.5 hours. You would be surprised how fast that goes by though…
3:30 PM: Snack – usually something simple and not messy, sometimes we will throw in sensory skills with snack time; practice using a fork/spoon, stacking crackers, sorting strawberries and blueberries.
4:00 PM: Playtime (together) – either outside or inside depending on the weather, sometimes both!
5:00 PM: Playtime (independent) – his play area in the living room is gated off from the rest of the house, so I allow him to play by himself so I can get started on dinner, feed the dogs, and do some light cleaning.
6:00 PM: Dinner – I’m pretty good at staying on schedule with this, we always eat at, or very close to 6 o’clock sharp.
6:30 PM: Bathtime! If dad is home, this is his thing. Boy time. Man time. It is the perfect way for them to bond since Dad is away a lot for work. (Sometimes, I love just peeking around the corner and watching them laugh together. Sweetest thing ever.)
7:00 – 7:30 PM: Bedtime Routine – PJ’s are on, kisses are given, hugs are taken, sound machine is turned on, lights are turned off!
This schedule thing is certainly a dream for some and a goal for most days, but if I can try to keep even part of the morning on a schedule it is a recipe for a more productive day. Schedules can change and grow with children too, that’s the beauty of it. What does your schedule look like?
*On my next post, I’ll share some of the activities we do in-between the sections of the day. Think: sensory and communication activities for 2-year olds.*