Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Preparing for tomorrow

Dylan regularly brings home a flyer from school put out by The Parent Institute.  It has advice on strategies to start the year off right, building a strong bond with your child's teacher, and setting routines to start the day off right.  I'm sure it's mildly helpful for parents of normal/neuro-typical kids.

For me, it's almost laughable. 

Take the article on routines to start the day.  Here's the advice:

Avoid "morning madness" by establishing evening routines.  Your child should:

  1. Choose clothes for the next day.
  2. Have his lunch and backpack ready to go.
  3. Set an alarm clock.  Make sure your child will have plenty of time in the morning.
  4. Stick to a regular bedtime.
At least #1 is easy.  Dylan wears a uniform so there's not too much to that.

But moving on to #2, things become more complicated.  Have lunch and backpack ready to go.  How can the backpack be ready to go if homework's not done?  Do I have him stay up late to pack his lunch?  Who, exactly, does that benefit since he's at his most distractable by bedtime?  Or do I push off homework so he can pack his lunch, which makes him even more distracted for homework.

"Make sure your child will have plenty of time in the morning."  Define plenty of time. Dylan has nearly 90 minutes yet I am still often nagging him to get out the darn door.

Stick to a regular bedtime.  Okay, we more or less do this, even if homework is not done.  Even if bath has not happened.  

What gets me is that the information on these brightly colored fliers make it all sound so easy.  If only.  Every day feels like a battle, even when things are going well.  Yes, we try to stick to routines.  Yes, we try to prepare.  But everyday seems to have its own very unique challenge, different from the day before, different from last week.  We get through, but it's not so easyIt's an abstract dance played out on a skating rink.  

1 comment:

  1. I agree. There's a lot those helpful little sheets leave out.