Friday, June 14, 2013

Alexa's REALLY Awesome Schedule

I did it! I've been wanting to do this for a long time now and I did it! YAY FOR ME!

Okay...what did I do?

Mothers of toddlers, I'm sure you've heard about all the benefits of having a schedule for your little one. Seriously, there are literally hundreds of articles, books, studies, opinions, etc. that you can find about how schedules improve behavior and make everyone's life easier. For me there was just one problem...

practically speaking I cannot do the same thing day after day in the same way 
at the same time!

I mean, whose life actually can be that way? Some days involve shopping, others involve trips to the library, others involve staying at home getting some cleaning done. Also, Alexa, being 2, is unpredictable from one day to the next. Last week she was a nightmare, this week she's like a totally different child. And some days she sleeps until 9am (rarely, but it happens), and other days she's up at 6:30am, which totally changes our plans for the morning. So sometimes breakfast is at 7am and sometimes it's at 9:30. And sometimes I need her to have nap at 12:00 and sometimes it can't happen until 2:30 (thank you 11:00 church) get the idea!

So, when I was reading all these articles, books, and studies, I'm thinking "uhhh, so how do I make a schedule for such an unpredictable creature?" It was very discouraging. After a while the thought occurred to me that "obviously, you need to have events and times in your schedule that can be moved around."

And so it became very clear what I needed to do: MAGNETS!
(poor lighting in the kitchen means you need to ignore the graininess of the pictures)

Everything from the times to each event to the day of the week and even the sun in the corner (I have varying weather pictures depending on what it looks like outside) are magnetic and rearranged daily. It's a great activity to do each morning with my 2-year old and a great resource for both of us to make sure we're not spending too much time in front of the TV or computer and that we're getting adequate amounts of play and work time each day.

Overall this project took me a few evenings, a couple hours at Kinko's, and about $15 for the laminating. Schedule events include the following items:

Blank Sheets for Writing in Special or Unpredictable Events
Bath Time                                Bedtime
Room Time                             Church
TV Time x2                             Swimming
James Time                             Potty Time x2
Playtime                                  Quiet Time
Lunch                                      Soccer
Shopping                                 Dance
Dinner                                     Crafts
Family Time                            Make Lunch
Breakfast                                 Make Dinner
Chores                                     Friends
Snack x2                                  Park
Reading                                   Outside
Clean-Up                                 Mom Time
Naptime                                   Library
Daddy Time

How exciting that we have this great tool and that it can grow with her. Here is a list (w/ links) to the Dingbat Fonts I used for the pictures (I also recently used them for a potty training chart I made, so I think they will continue to be very useful):

1. Pea Cookie’s Doodles, 2. Pea Delilah’s Doodles, 3. Pea Jokilyn Doodles, 4. Pea Shelley Belley’s Doodles, 5. Pea Stacy’s Doodles, 6. Pea Stacey’s New Doodles, 7. Pea The Bees in Love Doodles, 8. Pea Tisha’s Doodles, 9. Alfabilder, 10. Dingpartment Store, 11. ForKids, 12. Girl Characters, 13. Kawaii Food II, 14. LiveStyle, 15. PeaxWebdesignFreeIcons, 16. Scrapicons, 17. Tombats Three

Once again, yay for me (and you're welcome)! To see more things I plan on do-doing this summer, check out my list!


Marianne N Doug said...

Way to go Rachel! This is a fun idea. And it will encourage her to be more involved or aware and a great teaching tool.

Kylie said...

That is really cool! Walt has a pretty strict schedule and I sometimes really struggle with arranging my time around his nap...I'm glad you found something that works for you!