January 03, 2023 4 min read

 

Looking for an after-school routine for your kids that will help you stay connected to them while also checking off your never-ending "to-do" list? At times, even the most centered parents might experience severe emotional exhaustion and defeat by the time their children are (finally) put to bed for the night. This is due to the fact that they do not have a proper after-school routine. To help you cut out the chaos in your life, we've put together a fun after-school routine that your kids will love.

 

Why Do You Need an After-School Routine?

 

A young man sitting on the floor with his school bag and leaning on the table with his pens and books on the table

Credit: Envato Elements/ seventyfourimages

 

Having a school morning routine is normal but why would you need an after-school routine? Even though you might have your own routine when you get home, kids don't necessarily have one. 

When children develop routines, they can anticipate what comes next. Many kids find comfort in predictability. When your child knows what's coming next, you will notice better conduct.

Additionally, an after-school schedule guarantees that everything gets done. No one will be hurrying to finish homework or fumbling about doing any last-minute projects.

 

What Should Your After-School Routine Include?

 

After-school routines will vary depending on your children, as well as what they require and the particular circumstances that define their days. Having said that, here are a few crucial components you need to think about when you create an after-school routine for your child:

 

1)  Snack Time

 

A young child sitting at the table eating a snack and having some fruit juice

Credit: Envato Elements/ GalinkaZhi

 

A post-school snack is a welcome opportunity for many children to refuel. Before doing anything else on the after-school checklist, give them a healthy snack to avoid any tantrums or moodiness. In addition to giving your child the calories they need to replenish, a healthy snack also gives them time to unwind.

 

2)  Unstructured Play and Free Play Time

 

A young man at the table playing with his cars

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After the school day, kids need some time to unwind, therefore they require a brief period of free time, even if it is only for 20 minutes. During this time, make sure that your kid engages in enjoyable activities like playing with their toys or screen time.

 

3)  Homework

 

A young girl sitting at her desk and doing her homework

Credit: Envato Elements/ vladans

 

Make sure that you set some time apart for any homework that needs to be completed. When doing this, keep the following pointers in mind:

  • Schoolwork should be completed at the same time every day. This could happen right after their snack or right after dinner. Pick a time that best suits your children's requirements. Generally, it is advised that they finish their homework after their snack and before their energy runs low and procrastination takes over.
  • Make sure the kids have a well-lit space to complete their homework. Keep as few distractions as possible in their homework area, along with all the materials that they might need.
  • Be an encourager and monitor them. Make yourself available to them if they have any questions or concerns. 

 

4)  Sprinkle in Responsibilities

 

A young girl making some dough in the kitchen

Credit: Envato Elements/ s_kawee

 

Kids who have responsibilities as part of their after-school schedule might develop a sense of accomplishment and self-worth.

Giving children duties, like assisting in snack selection, helping to cook lunch, or choosing what to include in their lunch bags the next day can boost their self-esteem and give them a sense of purpose. 

 

5)  Allow Them To Participate in Structured Activities

 

Two boys from opposite teams on the soccer field shaking each others hands before kickoff
Credit: Envato Elements/ westend61

 

If you want your kids to balance physical fitness and psychological well-being, and at the same time learn lifelong lessons, make sure that you enroll them in an organized sport or something similar that they can do after school.

If a scheduled activity is too demanding for your family, you can still get the same advantages by letting your kids play with their neighborhood friends when they get home or by playing a quick game of catch in the backyard before dinner.

 

6)  Evening Walk

 

A family going out for a walk with their young daughter.

Credit: Envato Elements/ gpointstudio

 

If you can't accomplish the above activity, go for an evening walk with your child. Getting your child involved in an activity as simple as walking will help them concentrate, be more productive, and have better health. This activity can also help your child sleep better.

 

7)  Have Dinner Together

 

A young family and parents sitting at the dining table and eating together

Credit: Envato Elements/ s_kawee

 

Eating dinner together every night is a terrific way to improve your bond with your child. It will be the family's favorite time of the day since everyone is coming together after a long day of being away. You can also establish family routines such as watching a cartoon together or engaging in a small game after dinner.

 

8)  Bedtime

 

A young child sleeping on the couch in her clothes.

Credit: Envato Elements/ Wavebreakmedia

 

The last on the list is bedtime. Ensure that your bedtime routine is consistent. A consistent routine gives your child the sleep they require as well as the reassuring regularity they can count on. If you notice that they are groggy and agitated when they first get out of bed, you might want to consider setting an earlier bedtime for them.

 

Summary

 

Having an after-school checklist and schedule can help younger kids, especially elementary school kids to get some structure in their life. Remember that every day and every child is different. When attempting to implement an after-school activities routine, keep flexibility in mind. 

 

Alex Wittle
Alex Wittle



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