Christian Living Resources Family Living Well

How to make school mornings less stressful

Morning Stress!

Are school mornings chorus of where are my shoes, homework, coat, keys? All while the clock ticks toward the tardy bell? Everyone wishes they were more organized, but finding order in chaos can be done one item and one day at a time.

Ease into school bedtime. Give it 1 or 2 weeks (especially with young ones) to create a new routine without drama. Making bedtime earlier every couple of days. Aim for 8-10 hours of sleep each day, depending on your child’s needs. Keep bedtime the same on weekends for smaller kids to avoid disturbing sleep patterns.

Do homework at a set time each day before recreational screen time 

Work Areas for each child

  • Homework station with supplies organized for each child. A permanent area or space using a box or basket to keep each child’s supplies organized and easy to set up.
  • Create a file box or folder for class assignments for each child to track work. Older kids should do their filing themselves.
  • Stay connected by having a central wall calendar or common app on phones for appointments, sports projects, etc.

Online School schedule.

  • Create a schedule if you have multiple children working online and limited screen resources.
  • For distance learning, try to “mimic” the school environment with their private study area away from the busyness of the family.
  • Learn to navigate the online homework portal for your child and the parent side for important information from the school.

For the Upcoming Week

  • For small children, organize their clothes for the week
  • Make lunches the night before, or have the older kiddos make the lunches for everyone
  • Create an inbox for permission slips, sign-up sheets, and school notices.
  • Weeknight Dinners – Plan and prep meals on the weekend. Planned overs are a huge help. For example, reuse last night’s meatballs for sandwiches or sliced for pizza toppers.
  • Share the prep and cleanup chores with everyone.


  • Organize the bathroom the night before to prevent searching for grooming supplies and squabbling over bathroom time. Try hanging a mirror in bedrooms so the final grooming touches won’t tie up the bathroom.
  • Create a “Breakfast bar” with easy cereal and fruit grab-n-go choices that work for your family
  • Label bottles, lunch boxes, book bags, and outerwear for small children.

Getting out the door (This one is good for adult commuters also)

  • Organize the area near the door, so backpacks with homework, lunch, keys, and outerwear are all together.
  • Keep a bag of spare chargers, batteries, pencils, and calculators in the carpool car to avoid needing to return home and pick up forgotten items.