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Health & Parenting

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5 Tips to Get Your Kids Up for School

Once school is back in session, you can get everyone out the door faster with these morning timesavers.

3. Get Back to the Routine. continued...

Spivack says, “If you do it day after day and start your wind-down routine after dinner and everything is calming, technology is turned off, and you head into their rooms to give them a little more mom and dad time, that helps them wind down and get to sleep earlier.”

And take a little help from the sun. “Light regulates your body clock," Spivack says. "If you leave the blinds open, the morning light that comes in will [naturally] start to shift the kids’ wake-up time.”

4. A Little Bribery Never Hurts.

Who doesn’t love a shopping spree? Kids of all ages, and even teens, look forward to buying new clothes, backpacks, and school supplies. You can use this to motivate kids to get on a sleep schedule.

Swanson says to let them know that as soon as they get back on routine, you and they will go get the school supplies. And when you do, you may even splurge, but only if they get on track.

Beyond that, Swanson advises tuning into the things that are really important to your child and using them as leverage. “What is your child’s currency?" Swanson asks. "Video games, his cell phone, shopping? Find a way to give him what he’s after as long as he goes along with the plan.”

What if your child won’t get with the program and won't shut down the technology?

"If your kid refuses to go to bed, you might say something like, ‘I’m really wanting us to get back on track. I’m not looking forward to getting up early either. But I think video games are getting in the way and are amping you up. Do this or lose the game.’”

5. Make Morning Time Work.

Spivack and Swanson both say that clearly establishing expectations for your child is critical.

Lisa Joyner is a television producer and host, as well as a mom of 10-year-old and 11-month-old sons. As the self-described task master in her home, she’s had to search for ways of turning the morning rush into a well-oiled routine. “He really needs structure and to know what is expected of him,” she says of her 10-year-old. “When he’s given the guidelines, he’s good.”

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