Teaching time management to your kids is not as easy as 1-2-3. It takes practice, discipline, and a lot of motivation from both the parent and the child. However, time management can be easily implemented if you have the right tools. With the numerous activities that your child has going on in Kumon and in school, here are just some tools and tips on how you can help and teach your child to manage his time wisely and easily.
- Create a daily schedule or to-do-list
You can start helping your child by coming up with a schedule that he agrees with. For example, create a time schedule of activities per hour. You can make this from scratch (recycled materials) or with a white board from your local school supplies store. Divide your board in rows with one hour allotted per row. Then, you and your child can talk about what activities your child needs to accomplish within the day and write it on the board. For example, 5:00 PM is Kumon time and 8:00 PM is when you should go to bed.
It is better to impose a rule or activity if your child agrees with it, right? So, let him decide on some activities that he can do within an hour or two. This also teaches your child to be accountable for his activities. If you can’t plan activities by the hour, create a to-do-list based on his priorities for the day. Put a box next to each task so your child can check it after accomplishing his goal.
- Create a calendar
A calendar can also help your child manage his schedule for the whole month. By displaying the activities that he needs to do within the month, it also creates excitement and anticipation in him thus making him look forward to doing it. You can buy a big calendar or, better yet, make one of your own. Decide and plan with your child, too. You can also add your own activities so your child is also aware of your schedule.
- Make him wear a watch
By making your child wear a watch, this makes him more aware of the time. It doesn’t have to be an expensive watch though. A digital wrist watch can help him better manage his time even to the last minute, and it’s easier to read especially for a younger child. Your child can also use his watch as a timer. If for example your child doesn’t want to wear a watch, you can try other types of watches like a pocket watch or a watch he can hang as a necklace.
- Display it big!
Display his daily schedule and calendar in a place where everyone at home can see it, like the refrigerator or on his bedroom door. This makes everyone at home aware of your child’s schedule. This way, if your child forgets, there is someone who can remind him of his time. Helping your child manage his time is a family effort, too. But do make sure that your child does not grow dependent on you to always remind him of his schedule.
To make your calendars and schedules more appealing, use stickers or illustrations to depict the activity he has in store for the day. Make your displays colorful and even interactive to entice him to always use it. You can also utilize online calendars which you can install in your mobile tablets or phones.
- Be a role model
The most important thing that you can do as a parent is to model the right way. So, don’t be late for any appointments, or waste any time. Show your child that you are also managing your time wisely. If mom and dad does it right, then the child should also do it right.