Once our kids learn to tell time, the next step is to teach them time management. Help them understand how long things take, and how to balance tasks and schedules.
Here’s a simple way to teach your kids using mornings as an example. Do these steps with your child, even if they just watch and listen.
- Create a list of the steps that need to be completed,
- Put them in order (out of bed, teeth brushed, dressed, at the table, breakfast finished, lunch made, backpacks packed, etc.)
- Estimate how long each step takes.
- Use an analog clock to work backward and figure out what time each step needs to be done. (teeth brushed -7:10, at the table – 7:20, breakfast done – 7:40)
- Create a system to “notify” your kids. This might be a clock in each room with a (e.g. bathroom – 7:10) or Mom calling out time and tasks every 5-10 minutes.
- Add an explicit motivator, a critical need for the ADHD brain.
Try it out and adjust to make it better. Helping our kids with life skills is critical, and we must teach it, not just do it.