Kids Afternoon Routine Checklist

With some simple child friendly strategies, the afternoon can be a time of fun and achievement. Use this checklist to help keep things simply organised. As seen in the January 2015 Howards Catalogue. View the full catalogue HERE

There’s something to be said for a routine. With the emphasis usually on a morning routine and getting the kids off to school (fed, dressed, lunch packed, teeth brushed and in a timely manner), the afternoon routine is often overlooked. Afternoon routines are great as they can set everyone on the same path. The trick will be tailoring your routine to your children. Set the tone for a calm transition from school pickup to evening with this checklist and organising strategies…

  • Have them utilise the official front door “drop zone”.

    It doesn’t matter what age your kids are, when they set foot in the house, it’s highly likely they’ll drop their bag on the floor while simultaneously kicking off their shoes and socks and heading straight for the fridge. Multiply that by the number of children you have and before you realise it, there are items here, there and everywhere. Our first organising strategy is to create a designated home for their school gear at or near the front entrance; have your children pack away their own backpack and shoes, hang hats and coats, and pull out any school paperwork before they have afternoon tea. While they are at it, have your children unpack their lunch box/drink bottle and take it to the sink ready for the evening wash up.

  • Have healthy snacks on hand

    Are your children famished after school? The key to empowering the small people in our lives is to make it easy for them to help themselves to afternoon tea. So our second strategy is to organise your pantry with their snack foods within an easy to reach kid friendly zone. Stock it well with healthy snacks and your kids will love it.

  • Sort out school paperwork

    Avoid the before-school mad rush to fill out excursion forms and permissions slips! Strategy three is for you… While your little ones are enjoying afternoon tea, sort through any necessary school paperwork and re-pack it in their school bag straight away. You’ll be one step ahead in the morning.

  • Converse with your little one

    With their belly full, after school is prime relationship building time. Strike up a conversation with your child and find out about their day. Try questions that invoke more than just a one word answer, such as “what did you learn today?” and “what was the best thing that happened today?”

  • Set up a homework station

    Whether your child needs an after school adventure before it’s time for homework or they’re the ‘get home and get it over and done with’ type of personality, a designated homework spot will help your child to focus. For some children homework can be a drag; avoid the afternoon argument with a 20min-on/5mins-off rule. Regular breaks have been proven to help with concentration. Another strategy that works well with older children is calling homework time “homework happy hour”, using the old trick of positive association! The organisational benefits of teaching your kids to “focus on their own time” are good habits that will last them a forever.

  • Help out around home

    Create a household jobs chart and make sure they are shared around. Whether it’s setting the dinner table, packing away the dinner plates or feeding the pet, jobs actually teach life skills and ensure your children are contributing members of the family unit. Even if you have small kids, come up with age appropriate tasks and set an appropriate reward or pocket money system.

  • Enjoy some downtime

    With their homework and jobs complete a little downtime is in order and part of the reward. Enjoy an after dinner swim during daylight savings hours or some well-earned TV/screen time.


© Copyright Howards Storage World, 2015.

Accurate as at January 2015.