The importance of structure and routine are often taken for granted. All people need structure in life, but little people especially! Below are a few of our top reasons why:
1. Emotional and Social Development
Kids with family routines have been found to be more emotionally and socially advanced according to The National Center for Education Statistics. Children who participate in family routines may be better at expressing their feelings and understanding others, which can lead to academic success. The study points out that when “children are unhappy, insecure or unsure of their environment, energy goes into dealing with that, and not into learning.” Routines offer children security and a better learning environment overall.
2. Sense of Security
For children, the world is constantly changing which can be stressful. Bodies and parent expectations change as children grow older. Teachers come and go each year and more than just friends may change if a family move occurs. These kinds of changes are largely out of the child’s control. But predictable routines allow children to feel safe and in-control because they know what to expect.
3. Sense of Competence
With routines, children learn to handle their own lives– which can build both confidence and independence. After a while, children don’t need to be reminded about daily activities such as brushing teeth, sitting down for homework, helping with chores, etc. Plus, they’ll have an increased sense of competence and will enjoy being in charge of themselves! This can give parents less reason to nag and give children less reason to throw tantrums and rebel.
Predictable routines help children develop self-discipline because they learn how to constructively control themselves and their environments. It becomes second nature to them and they internalize constructive habits.
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