Preparedness- Preparing a child mentally for what will happen next.

Preparedness- Preparing a child mentally for what will happen next.

Preparing a child mentally for what’s expected in advance allows them to “prepare” themselves for what is happening now and what will happen next.

Children live in the moment. They aren’t looking at the clock. They don’t understand when they need to leave in 15 minutes, or why it is important. They are preoccupied with whatever task they are doing at that moment, in the moment, playing with a toy or getting dressed. So often as parents, we are rushing around and then wonder why our children are acting up, not prepared to leave, or giving us a hard time.

Tell children what is happening and why, especially in sequence. For example, if in the car and almost home, say, “When we get home, I want you to go inside, and get your pajamas on. Then we are going to have a snack and do homework.” So, when you get inside and tell them again to get their pajamas on, now they are prepared and know what is expected. Also prepare them when things will be out of schedule in advance, such as, “Today we have to go to the doctor’s office right after school for your sister’s checkup, so we won’t have time to play after you get off the bus.”

Another great example is getting to school on time. Everyone has to get to school at the same time; otherwise, it would be chaos, and there would be consequences. “What if everyone in your class got to school at different times?

How would the teacher know what and when to teach?” It makes sense. Life goes much smoother and easier when children are prepared and know what to expect and are engaged in the process, rather than simply herded like sheep (although we all have been in that position too).

Preparedness establishes confidence and trust. Children learn what you say happens and to trust your word. This carries into every facet of life, from why they need to brush their teeth, to when it’s time to go to sleep. Not only does talking to and with children help with cognition, planning, and language development, it also creates great listeners.

The paperback version of Create a Home of Learning is available at Amazon, your favorite bookseller or

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