Kids’ Morning Routine Checklist: Get Your Kids Out The Door Happy And On-Time

(Inside: A kids’ morning routine checklist that will help your morning run smoothly. It’s an editable morning routine chart so you can make it your own.)

The terrible-horrible-very-bad-worst part of our morning is when I announce “Time to go!” We all simultaneously lose our brain cells.

One kid can’t find his shoe, the other his homework, and the third decides to take a firm stance against why kids have to go to school anyway. Common sense and patience die and I find myself out-of-body looking down on a crazy woman yelling: “Get in the car! Right now!”

I hate that the last words my kids hear when I drop them off at school are, “Remember, a bad moment (our morning) is just a bad moment. It doesn’t mean you’re going to have a bad day. Goodbye! Love you!” (Big cheesy smile to make up for all the yelling.)

Somebody help.

We’ve tried all the tricks: getting ready the night before, allowing more time in the morning… No dice, for us.

I’ve been thinking about why when given a FULL THIRTY MINUTES, we can’t leave without tears. My conclusion is: My kids’ only morning priority is to play. They wake up early to transform Optimus Prime, shoot hoops, or protect our home from our sweet retired neighbors. 

kids' morning routine checklist

So, getting ready is like having a big, fat fly buzzing around their heads. They might start the process but soon they’re shooing away the thought of fixing their hair and grabbing their lunchboxes to hurry back to play.

This year, I knew we needed to get on the same page: Get ready first. Play second. But how do we get there? 

Enter the heroine of this story: THE LIST 

Of course, a friend gave me this idea. When deep in the I-hate-can-we-play-video-games-whining conversation, she flashed her phone in front of me with a beautiful kids’ daily routine checklist that her children must finish before screen time.

Then, angels started singing, the skies parted and streaks of light came down spotlighting THE LIST. (People and their ideas are ah-maze-ing.)

 So, I made my own. This checklist is what my kids MUST FINISH BEFORE THEY CAN PLAY.

We’re on week 4 and it’s working beautifully.

But what about you? What is the thing that sends you out-of-body yelling at your kids? Do you need a kids’ daily/morning routine checklist too?


I know you can make your own. And maybe getting your kid’s input and creating the family routine checklist is best for you. But, I also know you’re busy, so I have a word document template you could download and tweak to fit your family’s needs. It can become your heroine too for:

  • The bedtime routine.
  • Homework.
  • Practicing their instrument. (Or other interests.)
  • Chores.
  • Encouraging your kid to be ready on time for soccer. (Or other activities.)
  • Screen time.
  • Whatever.
kids' morning routine checklist
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The crazy lady is gone in the morning. (Well, mostly…) 

My brain cells have been restored. (Again, mostly…) 

So, I can save my yelling for another time. Like when the basketball slams off the hoop and bounces down our sloped driveway out into the street… 

That’s a phrase worth screaming. 

Be encouraged by the full Help Your Kid Thrive in School Series.

As a high school teacher for over two decades, I love, love, love watching kids learn. It’s okay if there are struggles in their educational journey. Not just okay – normal, even. We just keep stressing the importance of education and giving them the tools of success. And then we encourage our kids and love them well.

I hope you enjoy these articles.


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Parents, Help Your Kids Thrive in School By Asking These 4 Questions
Why I’m Not Freaking Out that My Struggling Reader Has Low Reading Scores
A Mom’s 1st Day of School Wishes
Moms, You’ll Better Enjoy the End of the School Year Remembering THIS


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kids' morning routine checklist
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