Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Creating a Toddler Calendar

After LO's slight ambivalence on his first day of taking the bus back in August, the child has completely and utterly fallen in love with the bus routine. He loves getting ready for the bus:
He loves waiting on the porch for the bus:
And he loves getting strapped into his very own seat on the bus by the bus aide:
Even though the child is always pleased to see me when he gets off the bus at the end of his day, he is also usually sad to see the bus heading off down the road.

He has also started asking me every day if he can take the bus--despite the fact that only Tuesdays and Thursdays are bus days. When he asked me this past weekend about the bus, I reminded him that it was only Saturday and that the bus came on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Then it hit me like a ton of bricks: LO has no idea what day Saturday is. I'm sure he's picked up on the difference between the weekend and the rest of the week, since it means J is home, but overall, there's not really anything that differentiates the beginning of one day from another in his life. They always start out the same, so what comes next must be something of a surprise.

Clearly, the child needs a calendar.

It was equally clear that I needed to spend all day Saturday (and a portion of Saturday night when I could have been sleeping) creating said calendar.

After searching Pinterest for inspiration, I ended up with this:
We already had the divided cork/dry erase board, so the total cost of this endeavor was relatively low. I just needed to laminate the little schedule images and attach magnets or stickers to the back of each (depending on if they were going on the cork or dry erase side).

LO was enchanted with his new toy. He spent 20 minutes on Sunday moving the magnets all around on the board and making sure to point out the bus magnets several times.

On Sunday, we used the calendar to tell him several times that the first part of the day would be spent at Sunday school. It seemed to have worked because he was perfectly happy to be dropped off at his classroom without any angst--unlike previous Sunday school experience. (It's amazing when a parenting effort actually produces the results you want instead of backfiring miserably.)

LO has also been interested in looking at the calendar every morning when J and I go over what day it is and what he can expect for the day. While it didn't stop him from wailing at the thought of going in Daddy's car this morning (LO is feeling a little Mom-cuddle-deprived lately since BB's arrival, and he was getting a little snuggle in this morning when it was time to go), he did not request the bus today. 

He also very clearly repeated Wednesday when I told him what day it was, which was all kinds of awesome.

Of course, because I'm not able to leave well enough alone, I'm starting to think about all the different toddler procedures that might go more smoothly with a colorful schedule.

1 comment:

  1. his back pack is as big as he is! Also, kids LOVE routine. Mmmmmmm, routine.