How do you get your kids dressed and to school in the morning without starting a family war? HELP!

Wynema - posted on 03/18/2009 ( 28 moms have responded )

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My 11 year old daughter has ADD and doesn't seem to have any concept of time. Every morning we get into it because she moves so slow. We have her backpack and lunch ready the night before and she has her clothes laid out. But she consistantly make our carpool have to wait on her and it drives me bonkers. What is a mom to do?

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Tricia - posted on 03/18/2009

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Make a chart- you can even use a sharpie on a dry erase board to creat little boxes next to her list of things to do in the AM for her to check off.  Kids with ADD love structure and routine.  This may help.

Kimberly - posted on 03/18/2009

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You are not alone.   I do know how you feel although I don't have children with ADD.  I do feel for these kids too nowadays.  



However, I felt like a drill sargent barking out orders of what he needed to do because the pressure of the clock was on my back juggling him getting ready, me getting ready, and getting 1 yr. old ready for daycare so I could go to work.  I never breathed until I sat down at my desk.  So, we came to a happy medium with our son by using a timer.  I gave him so much time for eating, brushing teeth, etc.  I have him also pick out the index card with what time the alarm rang at and what is he to do next on the back and the consequence if he doesn't do it.  He of course didn't get to his goals each time the timer went off at the first week.  I told him we had certain things to do each morning to get to school and asked what he would like to do before he went to school.  I said as long as you do everything else we need to do first, whatever time's left before going to wait for the bus -- usually about 20 min.  (I plan on being out to the bus 10 minutes earlier for any unforeseen struggle time)  he can do and reward him with a Wii play time credit for the weekend if he accomplishes that or consequence of losing 1 credit of our initial 2 hr. time frame. Now we leisurely and relaxingly have some talk/fun time in the morning waiting for the bus.   Now that he doesn't jump up and down crying he doesn't wake up the 1 yr. old and if she does she plays in her crib. 



Also does she like anything particular in school you could encourage her with or something she would enjoy doing once she gets all ready for school at least 1/2 hr. before you carpool time and leave yourself about 10 minutes to get her to a waiting spot for the carpool.  Decide together what rewards and consequences would be.  I wish you much sanity.  I can only tell you, you will find what works for you and it will come.  Happy moming!

Pam - posted on 03/18/2009

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When I wake up my son,(he's 8years old) I make sure he gets dressed before he leaves his room in the morning. I tell him he has 5 min to get dressed and in that 5 min, I get his breakfast ready. By the time his breakfast is ready whether it is 5 min later or 15 he should be dressed. As I am getting his food together I keep yelling to him how many min he has left. If by the time I am finished he is not dressed I go in his room and prompt him to "put on your shirt" or "common, get those socks on!" Oh, make sure, even if you don't like shoes in the house they are on her feet before she leaves her room. You just have to get her on a schedule and after a few weeks she will have it down. My son knows what to expect in the morning. There are no surprises and usually no battles before school.

Ruth - posted on 03/18/2009

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Here's a suggestion based on what I've learned through "Parenting Teens with Love and Logic." There's also a book for children of all ages. Butthe concepts are the same.

Here's my suggestion: Talk to her about how she can make changes to make her morning go smoother. Let her come up with choices in consultation with you. Let her be the one who decides what choices work for her. If she cannot make these changes successfully, talk to her ahead of time about what consequence she thinks would be fair. This way, she takes ownership for improving the situation. And she will accept the consequences if the situation does not improve.

Here's a story I wrote about Love and Logic and helicopter parenting:
http://suchasmartmom.com/2009/02/25/heli...

Good luck. I'm sure the carpool will love you! Ruth

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Clare - posted on 03/29/2009

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i printed some out on the computer put them up on the wall so they new what they had to do and told them they have 15mins to do each job they were really excited as they thought it was a game i started it on thursday last week had no problems we were actually early for once but on friday i took them to school in their pyjames because they were messing around all morning they were not ready by 8.00 it lasted a day but i will try it again as i think they have learnt their lesson

Sarah - posted on 03/29/2009

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We just use 3 x 5" cards that you can buy from any newsagent. The kids write each chore on a card ( and even a visual picture that demonstrates the chore) and in the morning and at night, they lay them out on our kitchen bench and turn them over when they complete each task.

Sarah - posted on 03/29/2009

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We just use 3 x 5" cards that you can buy from any newsagent. The kids write each chore on a card ( and even a visual picture that demonstrates the chore) and in the morning and at night, they lay them out on our kitchen bench and turn them over when they complete each task.

Sandy - posted on 03/25/2009

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MY KIDS GET UP AT SEVEN. I HAVE 3. 2 GO TO SCHOOL, 1 STAYS AT HOME WITH ME. LIKE YOU WE HAVE BAGS PACKED, LUNCH IN FRIDGE, UNIFORMS OUT THE NIGHT BEFORE. KIDS ALL HAVE BREAKY, CLEAN TEETH, FACES. GET DRESSED. PUT LUNCH IN BAGS. THESE JOBS ARE ALL COMPLETED WITH NO TV, RADIO ETC ON. IT'S ALWAYS A DISTRACTION. THEY ALL DO THEIR OWN JOBS AND DRESS THEMSELVES. MIND YOU I STILL HAVE TO CALLOUT REMINDERS. "PUT YOUR PJS AWAY"

Kylie - posted on 03/25/2009

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Hi Wynema,



My son (12) has ADAD and I did a chart outling the things he needs to do every morning before school. I did it in order and I have found that the consistency and routine really helps. I made it into a poster and put it in his room so he looks at it every day. Has made the mornings much calmer in our house. Good Luck!



Kylie

Christine - posted on 03/25/2009

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I did the chore charts with my girls (now 16 and 18) when younger, typed my own and put it on the fridge..or drew it up. Cheaper and negotiated tasks with them.
As a teacher I tell parents if that doesn't work bring them to school in pyjamas and have clothes in a bag. They'll only do it once!

Clare - posted on 03/24/2009

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Can you tell me where to get the chore cards from i would like to try that.

Thank you.

Clare - posted on 03/24/2009

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Thank you for that thats a really good idea they mess about alot in the mornings cause they get up so early and they seem to have alot of spare time but when its time to get dressed or have breakfast they just keep messing about it doesn't sink in to them that we have to be ready by a certain time but i have told them if they are not ready by the time i need to go they will go as they are ie pyjames,no shoes,hair not brushed.

But thanks again for the advice i will try that

Sarah - posted on 03/24/2009

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I think every parent has that problem in the morning and you get sick of telling them the same thing. We use chore cards for our kids, so every monring and night they lay out the jobs that they have to do and turn them over when they are done. for example things like brush teeth, get dressed, make lunch etc. This way you don't have to remind them of what they have to do. If they complete it in time, they then get a stamp on chart that when they achieve 25 stamps, they get $20 into their bank account. The reward can be anything that you think will motivate your kid. i.e new toy, chocolate, movies or $$. I can explain futher if you like as they get rewarded for doing good, and get stamps taken off for not doing it in time, so that motivates them too.

Mollie - posted on 03/24/2009

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Do you pick out their clothes the night before? That always helps me with two little girls!!

Valerie - posted on 03/20/2009

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My 4y/o used to be the same and some things I did was change the tone of my voice and choice of words instead of being bossy, she responded well then. In particular she hated brushing hair so I cut it short which she was happy with. Therefore if there was a specific issue you battled with you can deal with it with a specific response. She loves preschool so I told her if she wasn't dressed I would keep her home. Good luck.

Chrissy - posted on 03/19/2009

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I have a solution that's worked for me! My son used to be so pokey about EVERYTHING including getting in and out of cars, getting dressed, etc. So I turned it into a 'race' (I bet you can't get dressed by the time I count to 30!!). He's 6 and I had to start the 'racing' when he was about 3.

Sarita Chiquita - posted on 03/19/2009

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My son is very similar, it's hard! I have all the clothes ready in the morning giving him half hour head start on the rest. I don't allow him out until he's finished and then breakfast,etc. I find being very constant helps and always doing things the same way but I have to constantly nag. We get there now, it took a long time to get the routine working and I still have mornings I drag him out of bed! I try to stay calm as otherwise he gets upset,he is also ADD. I constantly explain why we do things instead of attacking him and it norm works, thank god!

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My son is also 11 and was always the last one ready. Like you I got frustrated...some kids need you more then others. Sometimes you have to slow down and take that extra ten minutes with them. Trust me I understand your in a rush and I to have another "younger" one to get ready but lifes to short to get frustrated. BTW I think everyone has a bit of ADD ...maybe she just isnt a morning person :)

Jean - posted on 03/19/2009

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My daughter is 15 and ADD we have the same issues. I started when she was younger we would pick out two (2) outfits the night before. Make sure all things are ready to go packback, keys, homework etc. the night before it make the morning easier. We also but clocks in every room of the a couple with alarm sets for 15 minutes, 10 minutes before we need to leave. This helped her watch the clock.

Good luck.

Wynema - posted on 03/19/2009

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I am happy to report that last night I had a talk with Hannah.  I asked her what she thought needed to happen in order for her to be dressed on time.  She told me that all she wanted was for me to stop following her around and telling her to hurry up.  She wanted me to leave her alone and let her do it.  So we agreed the I would set her alarm and that I would not come up and make sure that she is awake.  That I would fix breakfast and that the car would pull away at 7:20 with or without her.  She agreed!  AND IT WORKED!!!  She was up and completely dressed by 7:00 and in car completely ready by 7:20 and I didn't have to rush her once!!!!!!!!  THANK GOD!!!!

Denise - posted on 03/19/2009

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There is an awesome website: adhdofthechristiankind.com They have a wonderful system to help families dealing with adhd. ADHD children do better with very scheduled days. The site helped me make a chart for every day for the children to check off when done. For example they have a before bed chart: Where are your shoes, coat and backpack? Did you pick your clothes out for morning? Do you have a library book due? etc. I put this in a clear report cover page, the kids use different colored dry erase markers to check off each item. It really helps a lot!

Samantha - posted on 03/19/2009

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I'd try a reward chart with her, if she is ready on time she gets a star, tick, sticker what ever you want to use but if she not she then gets one took away. At the end of the week if she has a full week of stickers she then gets a reward. This has worked wonders for me when it came to things like potty training and things like that. Good luck and I hope that it works for you.

Heather - posted on 03/19/2009

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I know 11 years old is a little old to be dressing her but there are times that I "HELP" dress my boys in the mornings. For 2 reasons its a soothing wake up and they tend to be more responsive and quicker at getting ready if I sit them up help them get their shirt off and get them into a new one, by that time they are ready to get up and do the rest themselves. (So really it is just their shirts) the other reason is is because they do move slower if I am in the room harping on them to go, go, go. So helps keep things calm in the morning and as they are getting dressed we talk about what is going to be happening in the day while they are at school and what might be happening after school. Hope that might help some good luck

Clare - posted on 03/18/2009

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i have always told my kids if they are not ready by the time i am ready to go they will go to school in their pyjames i have 3 children 7 6 5 and i haver a battle too to get out in the morning

Wynema - posted on 03/18/2009

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Quoting Ruth:

Here's a suggestion based on what I've learned through "Parenting Teens with Love and Logic." There's also a book for children of all ages. Butthe concepts are the same.

Here's my suggestion: Talk to her about how she can make changes to make her morning go smoother. Let her come up with choices in consultation with you. Let her be the one who decides what choices work for her. If she cannot make these changes successfully, talk to her ahead of time about what consequence she thinks would be fair. This way, she takes ownership for improving the situation. And she will accept the consequences if the situation does not improve.

Here's a story I wrote about Love and Logic and helicopter parenting:
http://suchasmartmom.com/2009/02/25/heli...

Good luck. I'm sure the carpool will love you! Ruth



Ruth, thanks so much for your good advice.  I visited the site you suggested and agree that the information is valuable.  I think I am a drill sargent, and she does not respond to that at all.  I will have a talk with her later this evening and see if together we can come up with a solution that will work for her.  I also know that I have to stick with the consequences that I lay out.  Wish me the best.

Lindsay - posted on 03/18/2009

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If you get something to work, let me know! LOL My son is like this in every aspect of life.

Emily - posted on 03/18/2009

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Put her to bed in her school clothes? My six year old doens't like to get up. When we had to leave the house before seven I dressed her in her sleep. We leave later now, though, so she is able to dress herself with time to spare.

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