This winter has been miserable with the yucky weather and you’re ready for a break. But based on the stress and chaos of Winter Break, you know you also need a plan. You need a Spring Break Routine for your children.
Without a routine, by day 2 of break you will be spending your days refereeing fights and serving snacks non-stop. While your kids have just been on their tablets for hours, somehow your house will a mess.
Use a Spring Break routine for children and your Spring Break will be more enjoyable for everyone!
Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links; you can read more here.
Your Children Need a Spring Break Routine
Flexible routines are the key to harmony. When children know what to do next and have internalized it, everything flows better at home. Your home will be cleaner and your children will be calmer.
Instead of wondering what will happen during the day, your children will trust things will happen in a manageable way and this increases their confidence. If you have children prone to sensitivity or big emotions, a routine for Spring Break will make them feel more confident.
Similarly, routines build independence and self-assurance. When children are able to take care of small chores like making their bed and self-care like brushing teeth, they grow to believe they are capable.
Another reason that routines are powerful is they make children feel secure. A lot of children do better during the school year because they have the routine of the school day. The predictability of the school routine reduces anxiety and stress for children.
Parents Need a Spring Break Routine
It’s rough having the kids home all day when you’re used to time to get stuff done. Or maybe you need to work from home while the children are on Spring Break. You need the structure of the routine to accomplish your tasks.
With a Spring Break routine, you can nag less. The routine shows your children what they are expected to do. The routine frees you from constantly barking orders.
Also you’ll deal with less whining and less complaining when there is a structure to the day. Your children will enjoy knowing when they will get to do their favorite activities because it’s on the routine.
The Spring Break routine is powerful because it will keep you calmer. When you’re not constantly tripping over shoes that are left out, refereeing fights over toys and explaining the screen time rules for the 100th time, you will have more self-control, energy and mental bandwidth for fun.
Using a Spring Break Routine
I created this free printable Spring Break Routine for you. This routine is LOOSE. There is no specific time frame.
It is not set in stone. Depending on your child’s tolerance for unpredictability, you can eliminate the activities some days.
As I type this, for example, my husband just took our son on an outing while my daughter still plays independently in her pjs. She looked at the routine and made the choice to skip the outing so there is no conflict.
- Print out the Spring Break Routine
- If needed, use the dotted lines to cut it out and glue it down in another order on another piece of paper.
- Place it inside a sheet protector and then on a clipboard.
- Use a washable dry erase marker to check off activities as you go or cross off on days when the plan has changed.
- Proactively discuss those changes with your child.
Plan your Spring Break with Your Children
Then sit down with a notebook for ten minutes and decide what you’ll do for each day of the week.
These are the activities we will do:
I’ve found it I set out a craft activity for my children to do first thing in the morning, they have a much better day. Just like I start my day with a plan and a grounding activity like reading or journaling, my children do better with something planned and intentional.
- Drippy glue and tissue paper – We use Elmer’s glue, construction paper, and tissue paper squares to make collages.
- Watercolors – We use a watercolor pad and paints to create.
- Giant coloring sheets – Somehow these giant coloring sheets hold my children’s attention for much longer.
- Dot markers – I will draw a rainbow on construction paper and have my children fill in with dot markers.
- Stamps – Put out some rubber stamps, washable ink pads, and construction paper and see what your like makers create in the morning.
- Elmer’s glue
- construction paper
- tissue paper squares
- watercolor paper
- washable watercolors
- Crayola coloring pages
- Dot markers
- Rubber stamps
- washable stamp pads
Errands or Outings
We need to get out of the house each day for a bit. These are the places we will hit to break up the day into a more manageable chunk.
- grocery pick up
- Starbucks and drive through the country to look for cows
- indoor play place
- nature walk in our neighborhood
Before my children start their rest time, I set up a play scenario to transition them out of rest time in their room. These are all toys we already own. I simply set them on the dining table.
- Stuffies and snacks: I set out Melissa and Doug play food and my children serve their stuffed animals snacks.
- Car wash: Fill plastic shoe boxes with some soapy water. Give the children towels and the vegetable brushes and let them scrub their cars (or action figures).
- Puzzles: Just like any good preschool classroom, if you put a puzzle out in front of a child, they are more likely to complete it than if it’s hidden on a shelf.
- Block town: Set you a couple different block sets you have a home along with a few matchbox cars. Create buildings or ramps to demonstrate to your children that they are making a block town.
- Magnet sets: We’ve received these magnets from friends for birthdays and my children enjoy sitting and creating with them. Use an old cookie sheet or baking tray as a base if necessary.
- Melissa and Doug Food
- Plastic shoe boxes (get these at Target!)
- Vegetable scrubber
- Toy vehicles
- Melissa and Doug Puzzles
- Melissa and Doug Blocks
- Hot Wheels Cars
- Melissa and Doug magnets
Managing Screen Time on Spring Break with Kids
If you want to keep your children off screens for most of break, you’ll need to set up the rules ahead of time. Many people like checklist like this one from 30 Handmade Days.
However, all those rules are too complicated for my young children. They still need help to complete many of the tasks that she has. For my younger children, it’s easier to have it be an established part of the Spring Break routine.
We watch TV in the afternoon when I’m mentally fried and trying to get dinner ready.
Recapping Spring Break Routine for Children
Here’s the recap for busy parents:
- Children need a routine to create independence and develop confidence.
- Parents need a routine in order to stay calm and enjoy spring break.
- Use a Spring Routine Printable to give structure to your days.
- Plan some activities in the morning, an outing to leave the home, and as a break in the afternoon.
Using a loose, flexible spring break routine will help your children and you have a great break. Get your printable routine, plan some activities, and enjoy your time together.