Time Management Tips

Uncategorized Mar 17, 2019

Time is not manageable.  Tasks are manageable.  Attitudes about time are manageable.

Analog clocks and watches help children see the passage of time better than a digital watch or clock in which they only see number flipping

Since time is abstract, talk in terms of more concrete events.   Instead of saying, “in 5 minutes, we will……”  try “after 3 more lives on the game, we will….

If you always seem to “run out of time” on a particular task, record the beginning and ending times each day for 5 days in a row to get a more accurate estimate of how much time that tasks really takes and adjust accordingly

Build in extra time and plan on arriving 15 minutes early.  This may seem like a waste, but if you do arrive early, have cards, books, magazines, sketch pads, etc. ready to occupy the time, or just use the time to connect

Set alarms and reminders on phones.  Set one alarm for 5 minutes before departure time and one for departure time.   Related consequences.   This may seem extreme, but I had threatened and had to follow through.   I dropped my daughter off at school in her pajamas.   I called and warned the teacher, and I put clothes in her back pack, but she was refusing to get dressed every morning, not just being slow.   As she got to be a teenager, if she made us late for a class that she wanted to take, I created an invoice for the amount of instruction time she missed and deducted from her allowance.   One 90-minute gymnastics class costs $20 and you missed the first 15 minutes, so 15/90 x 20 = $3.33.   

Have a set time scheduled each week for chores. How likely do you think it is that your child who has ADHD thinks, “Oh, I have some time here.  Let me go clean my room.   Without it being a routine that is scheduled during the week, the chances are slim.  

Have a reward scheduled directly after scheduled undesirable tasks.    For instance, if you schedule weekly room and bathroom cleaning on Saturday mornings, have a regularly scheduled fun activity directly after that, such as a family bike ride or going out to eat pancakes, or even making the child’s favorite breakfast together.   If your child fails to get the task done in allotted time, there is a natural and related consequence of missing out on the fun activity.  

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