Humans are creatures of habit. This means that in order for us to be at our best, we need structure, and we need a routine that we can follow so that we don't simply do things willy nilly.
Having a routine for toddlers is important since not only does it prepare them for school and adult life later on, but it also helps you keep your home in order.
Consistency is key
The most important thing that you should remember when it comes to creating a routine for your toddler is to be consistent.
As your toddler grows up, their internal clock, or circadian rhythm starts to develop and tell them if they're hungry, or if they should eat, when they should sleep, and when they should wake up.
If you fail to be consistent child, then they would be confused as to when they should be doing things. This in turn makes it difficult for you to create a daily routine that they can easily follow.
An example would be to set a regular bedtime, as well as a time when they should wake up. It's important to be consistent when it comes to bedtime since constantly changing the time when your child sleeps can cause sleep problems, and can even make them constantly feel tired throughout the day.
Being consistent helps your kids get used to a routine, and it trains their bodies to follow that routine.
Set rules, and enforce them
Setting rules at home also helps when it comes to creating an effective routine for your toddler.
Most parents would agree that when it comes to eating, toddlers can sometimes be difficult to handle. Some toddlers like having snacks, but those snacks can ruin their appetite come dinnertime.
In order to help deal with those concerns, setting rules when it comes to their routine is pretty useful. You can set some ground rules that your child can't eat their snacks right before lunch, or dinner, and they should only eat whenever they're on the dinner table; not in their room, on the sofa, or anywhere else.
This helps set their expectations and teaches them that there's a right time and place for everything. Make sure to be firm with the rules that you set, that way your child knows that rules are meant to be followed, and not broken.
Sometimes it can be difficult for younger kids to follow the rules that you've enforced. Sometimes, kids even push back against the rules that you set, and can cause you and your kid to fight.
In these cases, it's okay to be flexible, especially if it's about minor things. However, it's better if you can sit your child down and explain why you're enforcing those rules. If they can better understand why you're creating a routine, it would make it easier for them to agree with the routine that you've set.
*Republished with permission from theAsianparent Philippines